October 10, 2008, Newsletter Issue #175: "Welcome to Medicare" Physical Exam

Tip of the Week

Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003 has expanded Medicare's covered services in the prevention of chronic disease

This benefit, also referred to as the "Welcome to Medicare" visit, is an excellent way for new Medicare beneficiaries to get information on health screenings and vaccinations, as well as to talk with their health care provider about their medical history and how to stay healthy.

All beneficiaries enrolled in Medicare Part B with effective dates that begin on or after January 1, 2005, will be covered for this benefit.

You can only take advantage of this one-time visit within your first six months of Medicare Part B coverage, so it is important that you make an appointment with a health care provider right away.

The "Welcome to Medicare" visit enables your health care provider to comprehensively review your health, to identify risk factors that may be associated with various diseases, such as diabetes, and to detect diseases early, when outcomes are best.

Contact your healthcare provider within 6 months of receiving your enrollment confirmation for Medicare B, and plan for a healthier future.

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