What is a ‘Welcome to Medicare’ Visit?
For those who haven’t yet reached the eligible age or status for Medicare, this may all be completely new to you. In fact, even if you are eligible and have signed up for Part A Medicare insurance or the Original Medicare plan, you may still be in the dark when it comes to the ‘Welcome to Medicare’ visit.
In essence, this refers to a physical exam that occurs within the first 12 months of you signing up for Medicare Part B specifically. This could be through the Original Medicare package, or it might be through a more tailored Medicare Advantage plan using Part C. Whichever way you have signed for Part B, the ‘Welcome to Medicare’ visit is a one-time physical examination which invites you to meet with your Doctor and go through a thorough review of your health.
What Do I Have To Do During the Visit?
The ‘Welcome to Medicare’ visit will happen just once during the first 12 months of membership to the Medicare Part B plan and will provide a comprehensive overview of your physical health as well as providing you with tailored information and education around keeping yourself fit and healthy. Medicare will only cover the cost of the visit if it occurs during these first 12 months, so make sure you schedule it as soon as you enroll in Plan B!
The Medicare Part B plan is the one that looks after your outpatient medical health and wellbeing, covering doctor’s visits and outpatient treatments that do not require an overnight stay in the hospital. As such, your ‘Welcome to Medicare’ visit under Plan B will include the following:
- A health review including your medical history, vision, blood pressure, body mass index.
- A check that you are up to date with preventative screening and services – this may result in further tests being arranged if necessary.
- Education and advice on how to prevent disease and improve your health.
- A written plan outlining all screenings and services you should get in the future.
- Advice regarding the creation of an advance directive – outlining the kind of health care you want if you are unable to make your own decisions in the future.
How Do I Prepare for my Visit?
In terms of preparation, the more you know and can find about your family medical history and your own medical history, the better. You should have a thorough understanding of any prescription drugs or medications you take – and why – and you should provide the doctor with as much information as possible regarding your health, wellbeing, and previous illnesses.
As much as anything, the ‘Welcome to Medicare’ visit is designed to set you up to receive the optimum care and support needed as part of your Medicare Part B coverage. The better prepared you are, the more productive the session will be – and as long as you arrange it within the 12-month cut-off period, the entire cost of the session will be covered by Medicare.
If you have any specific questions about the Medicare visit or want to understand more about what is required, get in touch with our team at Bobby Brock Insurance.