5 Things to Check Off Your Health Care List This Year

(With everything going on in our lives, plus staying home more due to the pandemic, it may be easy to put off appointments for preventive screenings, check-ups and immunizations. But as you get older, these visits become even more important — and many of them come at no additional cost under your Medicare plan.

For example, did you know that Medicare covers an annual wellness visit at no extra cost to you? Flu and pneumonia vaccines are also fully covered.

And rest assured that, in light of the pandemic, clinics, doctor’s offices and pharmacies have health and safety protocols in place to help keep patients safe during their appointments.

Make it a priority to add the following appointments to your 2021 calendar. Your long-term health may thank you.

1. Annual wellness visit

There is no additional charge under Medicare for your wellness visit.

2. Vaccinations

A COVID-19 vaccine might be available in your area. These vaccines are an important step in slowing the spread of the disease.

For shingles, a vaccination is the best way to protect against the disease. Two doses are recommended for those 50 and older.

The flu shot usually becomes available in August. It’s important to receive your flu shot each year, particularly in a time of COVID-19.

Finally, a pneumococcal vaccine, which can help prevent pneumonia, is recommended for all adults 65 years and older. This can be paired with a flu shot.

3. Preventive screenings and specialists

Visits for heart health, diabetes and other chronic conditions may be crucial to your overall wellness. Connect with your doctor to find out which preventive screenings you may need, too. This might include a mammogram, a colonoscopy and more.

4. Dental exam

A dental exam is an important part of oral and overall health. The American Dental Association recommends two dental visits a year.

5. Eye exam

You should consider having an eye exam every year. Not only can it help with how well you can see, but it may also detect issues, like glaucoma.

If you need more help in deciding how to navigate these appointments, ask your doctor how to most efficiently and effectively schedule these visits. Checking off these items can help ensure that you stay as healthy as possible for all of the other to-dos on your calendar.

And to learn how UnitedHealthcare Medicare plans are set up to help you access to the care you need, visit UHCMedicareHealthPlans.com.

Author Profile

The Editorial Team at Lake Oconee Health is made up of skilled health and wellness writers and experts, led by Daniel Casciato who has over 25 years of experience in healthcare writing. Since 1998, we have produced compelling and informative content for numerous publications, establishing ourselves as a trusted resource for health and wellness information. We aim to provide our readers with valuable insights and guidance to help them lead healthier and happier lives.