Does Medicare Cover Annual Physicals?

Greg Wilson

Updated on:

Does Medicare Cover Annual Physicals

    Having your health checked regularly is an essential part of staying healthy. However, you might wonder, “Does Medicare cover physicals?”

    The good news is that preventive care is an integral part of every health plan, thanks to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) passed in 2010. When you have Medicare, they emphasize these annual visits.

    However, asking for a “wellness visit” rather than a “physical” is essential to ensure that you get appropriate coverage.

    Discover more about annual wellness visits and coverage under Medicare!

    The Welcome to Medicare Visit

    When you first sign up with Medicare Part B — the part covering doctor visits — you'll be invited to do a Welcome to Medicare visit.

    This appointment is designed to document the care you need and plan the future. There is no cost for the exam, but it needs to be completed within 12 months of signing up for Medicare Part B.

    What is included in the Welcome to Medicare visit?

    Your healthcare provider will check your vital signs, including blood pressure, height, and weight. The doctor will also review your health history and ensure your preventive services and tests are up to date.

    From there, you'll work together to create a personalized plan for your healthcare needs, which will include Medicare physicals on an annual basis.

    Annual Medicare Wellness Visits

    Each year you'll have the option to schedule a Medicare wellness visit to review your current health, which is included in your Medicare Part B coverage, and there is no charge to you as long as the provider accepts Medicare.

    Wondering what to expect from a Medicare Wellness Visit? The doctor will recheck your vital signs and evaluate you for cognitive impairment. Based on your results, the doctor will offer advice on improving any medical conditions and staying healthy in the future.

    Sometimes the medical provider will order tests covered under the wellness visit. For example, if you have Original Medicare, you'll have to pay your Part B deductible and 20% of the cost for those tests.

    Annual Wellness With Medicare Advantage

    Many seniors don't have Original Medicare and prefer to get additional benefits using a Medicare Advantage plan.

    Medicare Advantage plans must have cost-free coverage for annual wellness exams, just like Original Medicare. However, you may have to visit one of their preferred medical providers.

    As long as your medical providers are within the Medicare Advantage plan's network, it would help if you didn't have trouble with your wellness visits.

    So Does Medicare Cover Physicals?

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    Both Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage plans cover annual wellness visits. In most ways, these are like physicals, but you have to ask for them as “wellness visits.”

    Now that you know the answer to “Does Medicare cover physicals,” you can rest easy knowing that this annual preventive care is covered.

    You deserve the peace of mind about your health insurance.

    If you qualify for Medicare but don't know where to start, we have licensed insurance agents ready to answer your questions and help you enroll in Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement Insurance, and Prescription Part D plans.

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