Medicare covers a one-time preventive visit within the first 12 months that you have Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance).

This visit is called the “Welcome to Medicare” preventive visit. The visit is a great way to get up-to-date on important screenings and shots and to talk with your doctor about your family history and how to stay healthy. 

What happens during the visit? 

During the visit, your doctor will: 

• Record your medical and social history (like alcohol or tobacco use, your diet, and your activity level). 

• Check your height, weight, and blood pressure. 

• Calculate your body mass index (BMI). 

• Give you a simple vision test. 

• Review your potential risk for depression and your level of safety. 

• Offer to talk with you about creating advance directives. Advance directives are legal documents that allow you to put in writing what kind of health care you would want if you were too ill to speak for yourself. 

Depending on your general health and medical history, your doctor will review your medical and social history related to your health, and education and counseling about preventive services. Your doctor will also give you a written plan (like a checklist) letting you know what screenings, shots, and other preventive services you need. 

What should I bring to the visit? 

When you go to your “Welcome to Medicare” preventive visit, bring these items: 

• Your medical records, including immunization records (if you’re seeing a new doctor). Call your old doctor to get copies of your medical records. 

• Your family health history. Try to learn as much as you can about your family’s health history before your appointment. Any information you can give your doctor can help determine if you’re at risk for certain diseases. 

• A list of prescription and over-the-counter drugs that you currently take, how often you take them, and why. 

Who’s covered, and how often is it covered? 

This visit is only covered one time, and you must have the visit within the first 12 months you’re enrolled in Part B. 

Your costs if you have Original Medicare 

You pay nothing if your doctor accepts assignment.


If you’ve had Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance) for longer than 12 months, you can get a yearly “Wellness” visit to develop or update a personalized prevention plan based on your current health and risk factors.

This includes: 

• Health risk assessment (Your doctor or health professional will ask you to answer some questions before or during your visit, which is called a health risk assessment. Your responses to the questions will help you and your health professional get the most from your yearly “Wellness” visit.) 

• Review of medical and family history. 

• Develop or update a list of current providers and prescriptions. 

• Height, weight, blood pressure, and other routine measurements. 

• Detection of any cognitive impairment. 

• Personalized health advice. 

• A list of risk factors and treatment options for you. 

• A screening schedule (like a checklist) for appropriate preventive services. 

How often is it covered  

Once every 12 months. 

Your costs if you have Original Medicare 

You pay nothing if your doctor accepts assignment.

This website was current at the time it was published or uploaded onto the web. Medicare policy changes frequently.  Our website was prepared as a service to the public and is not intended to grant rights or impose obligations, it contain references or links to statutes, regulations, or other policy materials. The information provided is only intended to be a general summary. It is not intended to take the place of either the written law or regulations. We encourage readers to review the specific statutes, regulations, and other interpretive materials for a full and accurate statement of their contents.