Screening and Prevention
“The doctor of the future will give no medicine but will interest his patients in the care of the human frame, in diet, and in the cause and prevention of disease.” ~Thomas A. Edison
Clinical Preventive Services Across Life’s Stages
Preventive care is provided to help avoid preventable diseases and conditions and to catch diseases and conditions early if they do develop. It involves annual exams and wellness visits, vaccinations, lab tests and screenings, breast exams, and more.
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force provides a comprehensive set of recommendations for all Americans’ preventive care—from infancy through old age.
Children and Adolescents
- Immunizations can protect children and adolescents from serious and potentially fatal diseases, including mumps, tetanus, and chicken pox.
- Early screening can detect vision and hearing problems in young children.
- Screening children and adolescents for overweight and obesity can protect them from adverse health outcomes later in life.
- Regular checkups that measure weight, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels can protect men and women from chronic diseases such as heart disease and diabetes.
- A Pap test every 3 to 5 years for women aged 21 to 65, depending on age and testing method, can protect them from cervical cancer.
- A mammogram every 2 years beginning at age 50 can detect early signs of breast cancer in women.
- Colorectal cancer screening beginning at age 50 can protect both men and women from colorectal cancer.
- “Booster” immunizations can protect both adult men and women against tetanus, diphtheria, and whooping cough.
Medicare Annual Wellness Visits
Medicare covers a yearly appointment with your primary care provider (PCP) to create or update a personalized prevention plan. This plan may help prevent illness based on your current health and risk factors. Medicare does not cover a head-to-toe physical but pays 100% for these health risk assessments:
“Welcome to Medicare Wellness Visit” – Within the first 12 months of your Medicare enrollment, this preventive visit is to promote general health and help prevent diseases, and:
- Check your height, weight, blood pressure, body mass index (BMI), and vision
- Review your medical and social history
- Review your potential for depression and other mental health conditions
- Review your ability to function safely in the home and community
- Provide you with education, counseling, and referrals related to your risk factors and other health needs
- Give you a checklist and/or written plan with information about other preventive services you may need
Annual Wellness Visit – After your first 12 months of Medicare benefits, you can schedule a yearly wellness visit to develop your prevention plan. This will:
- Check your height, weight, blood pressure, and other routine measurements
- Give you a health risk assessment, which may include a questionnaire that you complete before or during the visit that asks about your health status, injury risks, behavioral risks, and urgent health needs
- Review your functional ability and level of safety, which includes screening for hearing impairments and your risk of falling
- Assess your ability to perform activities of daily living (such as bathing and dressing) and your level of safety at home
- Learn about your medical and family history
- Make a list of your current providers, durable medical equipment (DME) suppliers, and medications, including prescription medications, vitamins, and supplements you may take
- Create a written 5-10-year screening schedule or checklist, keeping in mind your health status, screening history, and eligibility for age-appropriate, Medicare-covered preventive services
- Screen for cognitive impairment, including diseases such as Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia, which may include a test, observations, and/or on reports by you and others
- Screen for depression
- Provide health advice and referrals to health education and/or preventive counseling services aimed at reducing identified risk factors and promoting wellness and that may relate to weight loss, physical activity, smoking cessation, fall prevention, nutrition, and more
Determinants of Clinical Preventive Services
Many of the strongest predictors of health and well-being fall outside of the medical care setting. Social, economic, and physical environmental factors all influence health. For example, educational attainment, stable employment, safe homes and neighborhoods, and access to appropriate clinical preventive services all tend to affect health positively.
Need more info about screening and prevention at Cold Hollow Family Practice? Call us at 802-933-6664 or Request an Appointment here. We see patients of all ages from Enosburg, Richford, Franklin, Sheldon and Swanton.