Although a high percentage of seniors take advantage of medicare, most don’t maximize the use of medicare and all of their benefits.
We broke down a wide variety of discounts available to seniors nationwide from different industries like travel and groceries. Now we want to break down the key benefits directly available to seniors through Medicare that are overlooked and often not taken advantage of.
Let’s look at a few key areas that are often overlooked by Seniors that bring in thousands of dollars worth of savings on an annual basis:
1. Flu and Pneumonia Vaccinations
Because seniors can suffer from additional complications if they get the seasonal flu, Medicare will 100% subsidize their vaccinations if their medical health provider will accept the assignment. At this time this is an annually renewable benefit that is easy for seniors across the country to take advantage of.
This benefit can save seniors hundreds of dollars a year.
2. Depression Counseling and Treatment
Since the start of the state by state lockdowns this has been an area of need for many families and Medicare has responded. There are many benefits related to counseling and treatment options for depression. Below we list a few of the more popular ones but you should ask your primary care physician about all of the options available to you and your family.
- One depression screening per year. The screening must be done in a primary care doctor’s office or clinic that can provide follow-up treatment and referrals.
- Individual and group psychotherapy with doctors or certain other licensed professionals allowed by the state.
- Testing to determine if you are getting the necessary services and successful treatment.
- Psychiatric evaluation.
- ‘Tele-health’ appointments — by telephone or computer, from your own home.
This benefit can save seniors and their families hundreds of dollars a month.
3. Prescription Medication Discounts
Medicare provides a very high amount of subsidization to cover prescription medications for seniors across the country. If a senior has both Medicare Part A and B this will cover well up to 95% of all prescription medications costs in a year even while spending over $5,000 in a year on refills.
This benefit alone can save seniors thousands of dollars every year.
4. Preventative Genetic Testing
With a variety of new preventative treatment options for seniors, one which has grown in popularity the past ten years is genetic testing to identify hereditary predisposition to specific illnesses.
Medicare will cover these tests fully for seniors if that individual meets specific requirements for each test. These requirements are different from test to test and all require the ‘approval’ from your physician of record.
The most popular preventative genetic tests for seniors in recent years are listed below. Please keep in mind that each test will have it’s own unique set of requirements to be fully subsidized by Medicare and will require both Part A and Part B to be fully covered.
- Heart Disease
- Pharmacogenomic (Medication Prescriptions)
For example, for a senior to get a fully subsidized genetic test for diabetes the requirements are less stringent than those for cancer
|Requirements for a Diabetes Test|
|Family history of diabetes||Obesity|
|High Blood Pressure|
|Requirements for a Cancer Test|
|Anyone with relapsed cancer||Want to test for colorectal cancer|
|Anyone with a pre-existing cancer diagnosis|
Please always check for updates on their requirement with your physician of record to confirm the most up to date information regarding fully subsidized genetic testing covered by Medicare.
Because these tests vary in costs, this benefit can help a senior save over $10,000 a year if you can meet the requirements for all of the tests to be fully subsidized.
5. Assisted Living Benefits for Seniors
Medicare will pay 100% of assisted living costs up to 20 days and 80% of these costs up to 80 days for recovery directly related to an inpatient procedure from a hospital. In some cases Medicare will also 100% cover in-home care when a senior is ‘confined’ and unable to leave their home due to medical reasons.
This benefit can save seniors thousands of dollars every month and is reusable based on the needs of a senior whenever they have an inpatient procedure or are ‘confined’ at home with the need of medical care.
From the FTC: Fact Sheet on Genetic Testing
Link To The FTC Fact Sheet
These are two important facts to keep in mind reported by the FDA regarding at-home consumer genetic testing:
Validity of Genetic Tests According To The FDA And CDC
According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which regulates the manufacturers of genetic tests; and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which promotes health and quality of life, some of these tests lack scientific validity, and others provide medical results that are meaningful only in the context of a full medical evaluation.
Claims Of Genetic Tests
Having a particular gene doesn’t necessarily mean that a disease will develop; not having a particular gene doesn’t necessarily mean that the disease will not.