Update: What You Need to Know About Your Annual Medicare Wellness Exam


by Jayne D. Frank

As a person that routinely has had an annual physical since my 40s, I was horrified last year (in my 2nd year of Medicare) about how that visit with my doctor had changed in accordance with the pending Obamacare implementation. Please read my previous post “Obamacare’s Free Yearly Exam.”

This year, everything we have been warned about regarding Obamacare, Medicare and the new standards imposed upon our personal doctors has been confirmed and every senior citizen must make themselves aware of the new notion that everything you say, everything you do, and who you are, will be documented in your personal record and shared with the Government through CMS (Medicare). Also, record input by your doctor is probably being done through Wolters Kluwers Up to Date Website, based in Copenhagen, which centralizes the reporting to CMS. Please stay with me on this article as I relate my experience to help you understand what I learned after returning from my doctor’s office yesterday.

Upon arriving at the office, I was given a slew of paperwork (even though it had been updated earlier that year), and among that paperwork was a document asking about my state of depression, amount of times I am depressed, whether I am ambulatory or need help with any functions, etc. Since the personal visit is where I would ONLY discuss any possible depression with my doctor, I refused to fill out this form. When the doctor’s assistant saw that I left this form blank (taking up 10 minutes of my allocated time with my doctor), I informed her that it was “none of the government’s business” and she didn’t pursue it. Then before the doctor could see me, I was given a bunch of preprinted paperwork on asthma (although mine had been controlled for years), and Preventative Plans for Women.

Then it was time for the remainder of my allocated time with my doctor. He came in, went over the “filled out forms,” and only through personal questions to him could I get him off the “script.” My “fully clothed” physical came next and then I was dismissed. Once again, how on earth can a doctor see the signs of more serious problems (i.e., skin lesions, skin color changes, water on the legs, lumps, etc. if he does not personally exam your body?

I consider myself to be very informed as to the implications of Obamacare on all of us and especially those mandates and regulations for senior citizens. Knowing all of that, I was still not knowledgeable on what I was to find out through my research today. Keep remembering Obama’s phrase “If you like your doctor you can keep him.” I found and read the entire PDF document by the CMS (Medicare) which in a nutshell mandates that if doctors want to keep treating Medicare patients, they must adhere to a number of core rules and mandates regarding inputting your personal medical records into a database which will eventually be reviewed and “scored” by CMS. Why? So that our doctors and providers (including dentists, podiatrists and chiropractors) can “rat on us” to get $44,000 from the Government over a five-year period, just for our privilege of seeing him. There are actual benchmarks and information the doctor must input in order to “qualify” for this incentive. Information such as your race, ethnicity, and other demographic information. If the doctor does not follow these Government regulations on electronic records and reporting, he will not qualify for this incentive and his regular Medicare allowance will shrink by up to 5%.

Get the picture? It’s at the same time NOT about you and your health anymore, AND it’s ALL about you and your health. There will be assessments done and reported on any asthma you have, any depression you have, weight, and of course smoking. It is not how you and your doctor can better improve your particular health situation. So in the end you leave the doctor’s office feeling “used,” not by the doctor but by your Government. By the way, had I not had 6 questions on my iPhone in front of the doctor insisting on these individual answers, I am sure I could not have gotten those answers because of the time he has to spend on the computer during my presence.

Some senior citizens know what is going on and where this is leading; others are in denial or refuse to take heed and do something about it. I for one am going to fight tooth and nail to see what can be done by Congress to “defund Obamacare,” or to dismantle this program bit by bit. I owe this to our children and to myself.

It seems that the $750 billion reduction to Medicare under Obamacare could be avoided if these intrusive standards and the cost of massive data collection centers were eliminated instead of sucking the life-blood from Medicare and ultimately the care provided to seniors.

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