Annual Wellness Visit

skipdisk

New member
Hi Everyone,

I just heard from a friend that Medicare is offering something called an "Annual Wellness Visit" (different from annual physical). During this visit, the doctor goes over your entire medical history, provides a long term medical plan and is free to patients! Seems quite good, almost too good. Curious if I should talk to my doctor about this.

Have you been through an annual wellness visit? How was it? Or if not, why not?

Ankit.
 

retiredtraveler

Well-known member
I go to doc every 3 months for checkup and have annual physical. I have no need for a 'wellness visit'. I'm not sure who would be using this service. Maybe someone who has not been going to a doc regularly?
 

twinkles

Well-known member
Location
georgia
i have had an annual wellness done i dont see any difference than a regular check up-- she has her head stuck in the computer and ask you a couple of questions--you still have to pay a co pay and off you go
 

Don M.

Well-known member
Location
central Missouri
i have had an annual wellness done i dont see any difference than a regular check up-- she has her head stuck in the computer and ask you a couple of questions--you still have to pay a co pay and off you go
Same here...we go in for the "free" wellness visit every year, and it's not much more than a conversation while the doctor pecks on the computer. I guess it has some value if a person mentions any new symptoms, and the doctor is paying attention.
 

terry123

Well-known member
Location
Houston, Tx.
I had one a few years ago and the doctor could barely speak English. When they called the next time I said no thanks as I have my own doctor and I see him every few months. They have not called again.
 

Butterfly

Well-known member
I think these are worthless, especially if you have your own doc whom you see at last once a year. I don't like everybody and their brother asking me medical questions -- that stuff is between me and my doc.
 

skipdisk

New member
Original Poster
Thanks a lot folks. I haven't been to my doctor in maybe 6-7 months. So I might ask him what the deal is with this annual wellness visit next time I go. I definitely don't want to pay anything extra for it though.
 

Smiling Jane

New member
Location
Albuquerque NM
I think these are worthless, especially if you have your own doc whom you see at last once a year. I don't like everybody and their brother asking me medical questions -- that stuff is between me and my doc.
I only participated in one of these, and it was with my regular doc. She had a medical assistant in the room with her who rapid-fired questions about my medical history, all of which they already knew, or should have known. If they had put me on a conveyer belt that ran me through the room, it wouldn't have been any faster.

i considered the experience totally worthless and I refused to repeat it the following year.
 

dpwspringer

New member
Location
Georgia
I only participated in one of these, and it was with my regular doc. She had a medical assistant in the room with her who rapid-fired questions about my medical history, all of which they already knew, or should have known. If they had put me on a conveyer belt that ran me through the room, it wouldn't have been any faster.

i considered the experience totally worthless and I refused to repeat it the following year.
That pretty much sums up my experience with it... something for the doc to bill Medicare for. It is not suppose to be that way but that seemed to be the way it was for me. They just "combined" it with my yearly physical visit. I think it is suppose to be used as an opportunity to just chat with your doc for a while about things that concern you so that you get a better idea of your health concerns.
 

Pappy

Living the Dream
I guess I’m in the minority here, but the wife and I have them visit once a year, through United Healthcare, and they are very helpful. She, the doctor, helped me understand my heart problems a lot better than my heart doctor did. We look forward to their free visit and, we always get a nice gift. This year, it was a $25.00 Walmart gift card.
 

Happyflowerlady

Vagabond Flowerchild
Location
Northern Alabama
We have Cigna Healthsprings Medicare Advantage, and they also sponsor the wellness visit every year for us. This year, we already received the letter about the checkup, and we were offered a $50 gift card for taking the exam.
It is usually just a quick visit, where they check the vitals (like usual), and we filled out a several page inventory of past medical history, and then they have you draw a little clock face and set the time on it, remember some words, and stuff like that.
The doctor signed the paper that we had the wellness exam, and we sent it back in to Cigna, and should be receiving the gift cards any day now. There was no co-pay for having the exam, and we really didn’t have any kind of a future plan discussed.
It might be that only people who have an Advantage Plan are given the wellness visit, and people with regular Medicare don’t get the benefit maybe ?
 

Gary O'

Well-known member
Location
Oregon
Sounds like a free inspection by a mechanic looking to vacation in Cancun


'better have that checked out' leads to where I don't care to go
 

Lynk

Member
Location
Kentucky
I have had the wellness checkup and did not have to pay for it. My regular doctor , she just asked me several questions and then gave me a memory test which I managed to pass.
 

WhatInThe

Well-known member
I know people who's insurance sends out a nurse once a year which is nothing but a bunch of questions and ultra basic short physical like bp, heart/breathing check and quick exam for things like edema. Problem is when the nurse wants to come sometimes they already had a doctors visit that week. The nurses get pushy because they get paid per patient visited which turns the visit into a waste of time.
 

Butterfly

Well-known member
I know people who's insurance sends out a nurse once a year which is nothing but a bunch of questions and ultra basic short physical like bp, heart/breathing check and quick exam for things like edema. Problem is when the nurse wants to come sometimes they already had a doctors visit that week. The nurses get pushy because they get paid per patient visited which turns the visit into a waste of time.
I feel quite strongly that for anyone not suffering from an illness that requires home support those "nurse visit" things are an invasion of privacy, to say the least. I do not need some insurance company's nurse coming in and telling me how to manage my life. The "bunch of questions" are an invasion -- if the questions and answers are important I have already discussed then with my own health care provider. He/she already has my history and a list of my meds and knows my health status. If I need health care I will seek it from my provider.

I have refused to participate in those nurse visit things. No offense to nurses, I would still not participate if the visitors were board certified physicians. Just because I am an older person does not mean I am incompetent to manage my own health care.
 

Smiling Jane

New member
Location
Albuquerque NM
I wouldn't mind the nurse visits if they were actually helpful; if, for instance, they were there to point out safety issues that could cause problems. I could see them providing information on how to manage meds so they are taken properly.

That's not what they do, so I can't see any point in their intrusion.
 

Aputernut17

Active member
Location
SW FL. USA
Yes, we both get one every year, and while we are not supposed to be charged the co-pay $15.00 visit charge I was and Dh was not, so he phoned and asked why? answer was because I go blood drawn for testing, why? no idea not necessary, they said at the Wellness exam the Dr. is only supposed to ask 10 questions, then no charge. I don't know but it's all very sketchy, it was the same as any other 6 mos. visit I have.
 

Butterfly

Well-known member
I have a deep and abiding distrust of insurance companies (especially health insurance companies) in general and the very fact that these alleged "wellness visits" are a creation of the insurance companies (and not your treating providers) and therefore in my eyes set off red flags. I find the idea of "we're from your insurance company and we're here to help you" laughable -- kind of like if the IRS showed up at your door to "help you." IMHO, all the insurance companies want to do is find ways to deny benefits or reduce your coverage.

Did anyone see the coverage where the medical director of Aetna testified he never looked at patient records when deciding whether or not to cover or deny medical procedures for patients? THAT'S how they are here to help you.
 

WhatInThe

Well-known member
I have a deep and abiding distrust of insurance companies (especially health insurance companies) in general and the very fact that these alleged "wellness visits" are a creation of the insurance companies (and not your treating providers) and therefore in my eyes set off red flags. I find the idea of "we're from your insurance company and we're here to help you" laughable -- kind of like if the IRS showed up at your door to "help you." IMHO, all the insurance companies want to do is find ways to deny benefits or reduce your coverage.

Did anyone see the coverage where the medical director of Aetna testified he never looked at patient records when deciding whether or not to cover or deny medical procedures for patients? THAT'S how they are here to help you.
Insurance companies are definitely not your friend. Nor are many of these medical industry visitors-it's a job pure and simple. I've literally seen the smile come off a face the second they think the patient is out of sight. I always heard if somebody is writing or recording information in any fashion it's important. It might seem like a conversation but it's not. Point being the insurance company & medical people are fishing for information, they have a mission. The patient thinks they are having a conversation. One industry worker told me that as soon as the insurance company thinks the patient isn't following treatment with things like taking medication they will be considered non compliant and coverage/treatment will be dropped. Also if things get nasty one day as in a lawsuit all those questions and answers will be scoured by lawyers looking for a defense.
 

Don M.

Well-known member
Location
central Missouri
One of the latest "actions" that seems to be occurring is receiving a "ColoRectal" screening kit in the mail...to be sent to some "lab". I've been getting these, 2 or 3 times a year, for the past couple of years. I finally sent in a sample last Summer, and they quickly responded that I had blood in my stool, and wanted to make an appointment with some "specialist". I wasn't noticing any problems, so a couple of months later, during my annual Wellness visit, I had my doctor send in a sample to His lab...the results came back OK. These "Mail" offers, or the "As Seen on TV Cologuard" screenings, are...IMO...just another way to bleed our health care system, and pad the pockets of some unscrupulous individuals.
 

Butterfly

Well-known member
Insurance companies are definitely not your friend. Nor are many of these medical industry visitors-it's a job pure and simple. I've literally seen the smile come off a face the second they think the patient is out of sight. I always heard if somebody is writing or recording information in any fashion it's important. It might seem like a conversation but it's not. Point being the insurance company & medical people are fishing for information, they have a mission. The patient thinks they are having a conversation. One industry worker told me that as soon as the insurance company thinks the patient isn't following treatment with things like taking medication they will be considered non compliant and coverage/treatment will be dropped. Also if things get nasty one day as in a lawsuit all those questions and answers will be scoured by lawyers looking for a defense.
Absolutely!
 

Capt Lightning

Well-known member
Here in the UK we get invited for an annual 'review' which usually consists of a nurse asking a st of pre-determined questions.
We are basically reduced to a set of parameters established by some faceless committee and if we don't give the 'right' answer, the nurse gets flustered.... A typical case.....
"Do you drink ?"
"Yes"
"Now many units a week"
"Don't know. I don't count"
"Can you give me an estimate?"
"What sort of number do you have in mind?"
"It's recommended that you don't drink more than 14 units a week"
"OK, 30"
"That's far too much, you should cut down"
"OK, 5"
"But you said 30"
"No, I said that I didn't count. I've got no idea, why can't you accept that?"
"(Sigh) I'll say 14"

And so it goes on. Total waste of time.

Occasionally a private health provider invites you to pay for tests that your GP does for free. Maybe they think you'll be happier with their results.
 


Top