Flu shots are important for everyone, but especially for seniors. Luckily if you have Medicare there are several options available for it to be covered.
Are you over the age of 64? Do you have health insurance benefits through the Medicare program? Is it surprising to learn that 96 percent of elderly Americans have Medicare coverage?
Many people today worry about getting COVID-19. National health leaders are strongly encouraging everyone to get flu shots this year. This is very important for seniors to decrease their risk of flu and coronavirus.
Are you unsure if Medicare will cover your flu shot? Keep reading to the answer to this question.
A Brief Overview of Medicare Coverage
Medicare provides health insurance for U.S. citizens and legal residents over the age of 64. The “Original Medicare” includes Part A and B.
Part A Medicare covers inpatient hospital care. Part B Medicare provides insurance coverage for outpatient care. Today, you may purchase Medigap coverage called Medicare Part C and D.
The different parts of Medicare have different rules and not all parts work together. If you have expenses not covered by Original Medicare, you must pay the difference. This is where Medigap coverage can help.
Medicare Advantage or Part C is purchased through a private insurance company. It covers inpatient and outpatient care and includes prescriptions, vision, and dental care. Medicare Part D is another supplement you may buy to cover prescription medications.
About 6.1 million elderly Americans have no supplemental Medicare coverage. This often results in financial disaster.
How Flu Shots Benefit Senior Health
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) strongly recommends flu shots for almost everyone older than 6 months. This is very important in 2020 with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. This especially applies to people over 64 years.
In past years, 50 percent to 70 percent of flu hospitalizations have been for people 65 years and older. This same group has the highest rate of hospitalization for COVID-19.
These individuals also have a higher risk of developing serious complications from the flu. In recent years, between 70 percent and 85 percent of flu-related deaths occurred in this age group as well. These risks combine to put these people at very high risk during the 2020-2021 flu season.
Will Medicare Pay for Flu Shots?
Medicare Part B covers 95 percent of the Average Wholesale Price for flu shots in outpatient settings. You do not have to pay a deductible or coinsurance for the flu vaccine. Medicare Part D does not cover the flu shot since it’s covered by Part B.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services changed the coverage start date to August 1. This follows the CDC recommendation to get the flu vaccine as early as it’s available in 2020.
Do You Find Medicare Coverage Confusing?
Many individuals are unsure about the different parts of Medicare and what it covers. This article has answered one question for you. Medicare Part B will cover flu shots.
Senior Affairs mission is to provide reliable and understandable information about Medicare. You will find information about Original Medicare and the different supplements. We want you to feel confident in making these important choices.
Since we aren’t an insurance agency or provider, we can’t answer specific case questions. This includes questions about claims, payments, or eligibility. However, if you want to learn more about the options available, you’ve come to the right place.