| Tue, Feb 24, 2015 @ 09:00 AM

Are You Heart Healthy? Find Out. Get Screened.

Posted by Medicare Made Clear

heart diseaseMany of us already know what we should do to try to ward off cardiovascular disease, also known as coronary artery disease (CAD). Cardiovascular disease risk factors, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and high blood glucose may be successfully managed by getting plenty of exercise, eating a low-fat diet, maintaining a healthy weight, not smoking and limiting alcohol consumption.

A good way to find out if you have any risk factors is by going to the doctor for a cardiovascular screening visit and an Annual Wellness Visit. These visits may help find diseases earlier when they’re usually easier to treat. Visits may also help prevent, delay or lessen the impact of heart disease.

Cardiovascular Screenings and Visits

If you have Medicare Part B (Original Medicare), Medicare covers a behavioral-focused, cardiovascular disease risk reduction visit once per year. This visit usually includes a blood pressure check and counseling to discuss things like a healthy diet and whether you should be on aspirin therapy.

Since high cholesterol levels may increase your risk for heart disease and stroke, it is also recommended you go in for a cardiovascular screenings visit. During this visit, your cholesterol, lipid, and triglyceride levels will be checked. This preventive visit is covered by Medicare Part B once every five years at no additional cost to you.

Annual Wellness Visit

Medicare Part B covers an Annual Wellness Visit once a year at no additional cost to you. You will not have to pay a Part B deductible for this visit. As part of this visit, you will fill out a Health Risk Assessment, which will help you and your doctor come up with a personalized prevention plan to help you live a healthier life. The visit may also include:

  • A review of your medical and family history
  • Developing or updating a list of current providers and prescriptions
  • Height, weight, blood pressure, and other routine measurements
  • Detection of any cognitive impairment
  • Personalized health advice
  • A list of risk factors and treatment options for you

If your doctor performs additional tests or services during this visit that aren’t covered under an Annual Wellness Visit, you may have to pay a coinsurance amount.

Many Medicare Advantage plans offer extra programs and services to help you live a healthier life.

Talk to your doctor to find out what tests you need and how often you need them.

Your doctor may do exams or tests that Medicare doesn’t cover. Your doctor also may recommend that you have tests more or less often than Medicare covers them. If a service you get isn’t covered and you think it should be, you may appeal this decision. For more information on filing an appeal, visit www.medicare.gov/appeals, or call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048.

For more information, explore MedicareMadeClear.com or contact the Medicare helpline 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227), TTY 1-877-486-2048.

Resources:

Your Guide to Medicare’s Preventive Services: Medicare.gov

Heart-Health Screenings: American Heart Association

Spring into Spring with Your Medicare Wellness Visit: Medicare Made Clear

 

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