Are you new to Medicare? Here is information on physician appointments
and consultative services you are entitled to receive at no charge. Even
if you are perfectly healthy right now, it's inevitable that advancing
years will bring new health issues — and you have a right to receive
care that is aligned with your priorities and values. If you already face
medical challenges, it's even more important to take stock and make
sure your doctor is aware of your priorities.
At Torrance Memorial, we urge you to take advantage of these no-cost consultations
that provide an opportunity to identify your risks and clarify your wishes
for treatment. We consider prevention a priority for our medical practice.
One-Time, No-Cost Preventive Consultation
Every Medicare recipient is entitled to one, no-cost private consultation
with your primary care physician focused on preventive care as you age.
This appointment includes:
- A review of your medical history, including a discussion of your specific
age- and health-related safety risks
- A mood assessment, including a review of symptoms that may indicate you
have or are at risk for depression
- An opportunity to discuss your wishes and to create advance directives
- A take-home, written plan outlining screenings, shots, and other preventive
services you need, along with details about coverage for screenings, shots,
and other preventive services.
Annual Wellness Visits
If you've had Medicare Part B for at least a year, you are entitled
to have annual wellness visits to develop and/or update your personalized
prevention plan based on your health right now. At this yearly visit,
your doctor will ask you to fill out a questionnaire so he/she can work
together with you to create a plan to keep you as healthy as possible
for the next 12 months. You can schedule a no-cost wellness visit once
each year; at the time of scheduling, 11 full months must have passed
since your last such visit. At this visit you and your doctor will:
- Talk with you about your medical and family history, including what may
have changed in the past year.
- Develop/update your current list of doctors (specialists) and the medications
you take, including vitamins and supplements.
- Take height, weight, blood pressure, and other routine measurements.
- Assess your cognitive status and mental functioning.
- Create a list of your specific health risk factors and outline your treatment options.
- Give you a checklist and schedule of recommended health screenings, immunizations
and preventive services, along with information on what Medicare pays
for, what charges get applied to your Plan B deductible and what costs
may need to be paid out of pocket, if any.
- Discuss your overall health and answer your questions.
Why Miss An Opportunity to Improve Your Health At No Cost to You?
Both of these one-on-one medical services – the one-time private
preventive consultation and the annual wellness visits -- are available
at no cost to you if you have Medicare; your Part B deductible does not
apply. It's smart to take this opportunity to review your health,
to learn what you can and should do to stay strong and well and to review
your health and care priorities. You'll stay healthy and feel more
in control and your family will appreciate your efforts to do so.
Important note: There may sometimes be additional charges (and/or Plan
B deductible may apply) if your doctor performs additional, uncovered
tests/services or recommends more frequent appointments. We invite your
questions about costs and Medicare coverage so please, always, feel free to ask!