| Thu, Mar 21, 2019 @ 08:00 AM

Heart Healthy Help from Medicare

Posted by Medicare Made Clear

Woman doctor with senior patientHeart disease kills an estimated 610,000 Americans each year. It’s the leading cause of death for both men and women.1

Your risk for developing heart disease increases if you are:

  • A woman age 55 or older
  • A man age 45 or older
  • From a family with a history of early heart disease

While you can’t control your age or family history, there are some heart disease risks that you can control. Healthy lifestyle behaviors, such as not smoking, eating low-fat foods and increasing physical activity can help reduce your risk. It’s also important to manage medical conditions that increase risk, such as high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol and triglycerides, and diabetes.

And Medicare can help.

Use Your Medicare Preventive Care Benefits

Medicare covers many preventive health screenings to help detect health problems early when they can be treated most effectively. These services can also help keep you from getting certain diseases, such as the flu. Some services come at no additional cost to you, as long as your doctor accepts assignment.

Welcome to Medicare and Yearly Wellness Visits

When you first join Medicare and enroll in Part B, and every 12 months after that, Medicare covers a preventive care visit with your doctor called a Wellness Visit. At the visit, you and your doctor review your medical and family health history. Together, you develop or review your personalized prevention plan. The plan (a sort of checklist) includes screenings, shots and other recommendations your doctor suggests to help you stay healthy.

Preventive Services for Heart Health

You can have your blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels checked every 5 years. Other covered preventive services that help reduce your heart disease risk include smoking cessation counseling, weight loss counseling, diabetes screenings and self-management training and medical nutrition therapy.

Take Advantage of Any Extras Your Medicare Plan Offers

In addition to the basic preventive services benefit you get with Original Medicare, many Medicare Advantage plans offer extra programs and services to help you stay healthy. These may include:

  • Wellness programs to help you assess your health risks, identify ways to reduce your risks and put what you learn into practice.
  • Fitness programs and discounts on gym memberships to help you get and stay active.
  • Nutrition and health coaching to help you follow a healthy diet, manage stress and improve your overall well-being.
  • Disease management programs to help you live well with chronic conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes and others.

Give your loved ones, and yourself, the gift of a healthier you. Take care of your heart, so you can take care of theirs.

For more information about Medicare, 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.

1Heart Disease Facts

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