Health

Let Medicare Help You Get the Mental Health Care You Need

February 4th, 2021

As of 2017, about 1 in 7 Americans—15.2% of the population—was over the age of 60. This number is rapidly increasing as Baby Boomers get older. Another thing that becomes more common with age is disability. While we often think of disabilities as physical—mobility issues, limb weakness, loss of fine motor control—that’s not always true. 

According to the World Health Organization, about 15% of adults over the age of 60 live with a mental disorder. With so many Americans hitting the 60 and up age range, it’s going to be more important than ever to pay attention to mental health, too. Plus, with many people cancelling major plans and staying indoors to prevent spreading or contracting COVID-19, you might be encountering mental health struggles like anxiety or depression.

Did you know that Medicare makes it easier to get care for these issues? Under Medicare Part B, you’re entitled to services that help you protect your mental health. 

Here are some services you could receive as part of your Medicare Part B coverage.

  • Depression Screening: Everyone with Medicare coverage is eligible for one depression screening every 12 months. You can get this screening at a doctor’s office (such as your primary care physician’s office). Then your doctor can help you find appropriate follow-up treatment or make referrals.
  • Family Counseling: Covered when the purpose is to help with treatment.
  • Medication Therapy Management Program: For individuals with complex health problems, Medicare offers a medication management program. This can help your doctors determine whether your treatment is working for you.
  • Preventative Care Visit: This is a one-time visit that can help your doctor determine whether you are at risk for depression
  • Wellness Visit: This is a yearly visit where you can talk to your doctor or health care provider about any changes you have experienced with your mental health. This evaluation my change from year to year.
  • Individual and Group Therapy: Medicare Part B covers counseling and therapy as part of its mental health services. 

Where Medicare Part A covers inpatient care such as hospital visits, Part B covers outpatient care. If you should need inpatient psychiatric care, this may be covered by Medicare Part A. This isn’t an exhaustive list, either, merely some services that may fall under your Part B coverage. Be sure to let your doctor know if you are experiencing mental health changes and think you might need care.

Still haven’t found the right Medicare coverage? Head over to our Medicare center and compare plans easily!

If you are in crisis, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides free, confidential emotional support 24/7. Get help now by calling 1-800-273-8255. 

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