Checklist for Your Yearly Checkup | Senior Health
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Senior Health

Checklist for Your Yearly Checkup

Our bodies are built to last, but we still have to take care of them — especially as we age. Even if nothing is wrong, it is important that you see your doctor at least once a year for a checkup to note any changes in your health.

If doctors only see you when you’re sick, they have no baseline for your health1.

 

The Annual Wellness Visit is a key to helping you live a healthier life. It helps your doctor to determine the general status of your health and create or update a personalized care plan1. This benefit is usually at no cost to you, but visit Medicare.gov to check if a copay or deductible will apply.

 

It is important that you know what to expect so you can make the most of your Annual Wellness Visit. Use the checklists below to prepare for your visit.

 

What should you bring with you?

When you are prepared, your Annual Wellness Visit is more than just an office visit. It is a chance to take charge of your health. You should gather the following items to take with you for your yearly checkup:

  • Current medical insurance information
  • List of all supplements and medications (prescription and over-the-counter)
  • List of any symptoms or pain you are experiencing
  • List of all your doctors
  • List of recent immunizations, test and surgeries
  • Family medical history
  • List of questions you want to ask the doctor

 

Your doctor may also send you a form before your visit that includes a list of questions. Filling out this form will help your doctor to learn your full health history and also remind you of any questions you might want to ask at your visit.

 

What can you expect during your checkup?
The Annual Wellness Visit focuses on preventive care and wellness planning. To better understand your health and care for you, your doctor will review your medical history and lifestyle, complete health screenings and more:

  • Review your medications
  • Update your stats
  • Height and weight
  • Blood pressure
  • Complete a functional assessment
  • Complete a pain assessment
  • Screen for depression
  • Discuss and order immunizations
  • Discuss your advance directive
  • Update and share your healthcare plan with you

 

Depending on what your doctor finds, they may refer you for other tests or screenings at a later date. If there are no problems, you are set until next year2.

 

If you haven’t planned your Annual Wellness Visit yet this year, use this as the push you need to get it on your calendar. It could be one of the most important visits you have all year.

 

Remember, the Annual Wellness Visit is not a head-to-toe physical nor the one-time Welcome to Medicare preventive visit. Visit the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to learn how these exams are different.

  1. https://www.medicareinteractive.org/get-answers/medicare-covered-services/preventive-services/annual-wellness-visit
  2. https://www.healthline.com/health/physical-examination#procedure

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