Does Medicare Provide Preventative Health Care?

Medicare is the U.S. Government’s basic health care program for people 65 years of age and over, those who are disabled, and people with end-stage renal disease. Medicare beneficiaries are usually required to pay a deductible or copayment to defray part of their medical expenses.

Medicare provides preventative health care services under Medicare Part B. Part B is available for any individual over 65 years of age, even if the person is not eligible for Social Security.

Medicare has four primary divisions, A, B, C, and D. Part A covers hospital stays; Part B provides preventative health care services; Part C gives beneficiaries the right to receive their medical care from among a number of supplemental programs and private insurance carriers; and Part D covers prescription medications.


A person is eligible for Medicare Part A if the individual has reached the age of 65, is either a U.S. citizen or a legal alien, is a disabled person of any age who is entitled to Social Security, or a person who has end-stage renal disease.

Medicare Part B is available for anyone over age 65 regardless of Social Security eligibility. Medicare Part B provides preventative health care services as appointments with medical specialists, care on an outpatient basis,

Outpatient diagnostic tests, and most outpatient therapies recommended by a doctor.

Medicare Part B covers these specific preventative healthcare services:

• Welcome to Medicare Seminar
• Preventative Services Seminar
• Risk Reduction Seminar
• Colon Cancer Test
• Bone Density Measurement
• Colorectal Cancer Test
• Diabetes Test
• Glaucoma Test
• Bone Mass Measurement
• Cardiovascular Screening
• Flu Shots
• Hepatitis B Shot
• HIV Test
• Breast Cancer Screening
• Nutrition Therapy Services
• Cervical and Vaginal Cancer Test
• Prostate Cancer Test

The following items are among those not covered:

• prescription drugs that are not given by a doctor
• routine checkups
• eye glasses
• hearing aids
• cosmetic surgery
• dental services

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