Get a glaucoma test and make your vision top priority!

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More than 3 million people in the U.S. have glaucoma, and some have no idea they have it. Glaucoma is a group of diseases that can cause permanent vision loss and blindness. If you get a glaucoma test and find treatment early, you can protect your eyes from serious vision loss.

January is glaucoma awareness month, and it’s the perfect time to check and see if you’re at high risk. You’re at high risk for glaucoma if one or more of these apply to you:

  • You have diabetes

Cervical cancer tests—early detection protects women

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All women are at risk for cervical cancer, but did you know it occurs most often in women over 30? Each year, more than 12,000 women in the U.S. are diagnosed with cervical cancer. Fortunately, it’s one of the easiest female cancers to detect, and it’s highly treatable when found early.

Get ready for a new year of coverage

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The start of a new year can bring many changes, including some to your Medicare coverage.

If you changed health or drug plans for 2020, your new coverage begins January 1. Costs may have changed too so check out your basic costs for Medicare-covered tests, items, and services. For more personalized and cost specific information, visit your Medicare account or create one.

Use your new Medicare card now

By now, you should have your new Medicare card—with your new Medicare Number. 

Make sure you bring your card to any appointments with your doctors, so they have your new number in their systems. Doing so will help us process your claims.  You can only use your old card and Medicare Number to get health care services until December 31, 2019.

If you’re in a Medicare Advantage Plan (like an HMO or PPO) or a Medicare Drug Plan, use your Plan ID card whenever you need care or prescriptions. However, you should also carry your Medicare card—you may be asked to show it so your doctor can make sure your new number is in their system.

Act now: Medicare Open Enrollment ends December 7

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Time’s running out to make changes to your Medicare coverage for 2020! Medicare Open Enrollment ends December 7.

3 reasons to compare your Medicare coverage for 2020 during open enrollment

Even if you’re happy with your current Medicare coverage, it’s important to know your options for the upcoming year. Here’s why it could be beneficial to change your Medicare coverage:

  1. Needs change. Maybe your trips to the doctor are more/less frequent, prescriptions have changed, or you need more access to health care services.

Support World AIDS Day – Get your HIV screening today

Did you know that nearly 40,000 people are diagnosed with HIV in the U.S. each year? Of the 1.1 million people currently living with HIV in the U.S., 1 in 7 don’t even know they have it. Medicare covers HIV screenings for people with Medicare 15-65 years old who ask for the test, people younger than 15 or older than 65 who are at increased risk, and pregnant women.

3 ways to save on Medicare costs

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You may be able to get help paying for your health and prescription drug costs. Even if you aren’t sure you’re eligible, it’s worth learning more about these 3 ways to save on Medicare costs:

  1. Medicaid

If you have limited income and resources, you may qualify for Medicaid—a joint federal and state program that:

  • Helps with medical costs
  • Offers benefits not normally covered by Medicare, like nursing home care and personal care services

    Each state has different rules about eligibility and applying for Medicaid. Call your state Medicaid program to see if you qualify, learn how to apply, and how Medicare works with Medicaid.

Smoke-free is the way to be

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Every year, more people die from lung cancer than any other type of cancer, and smoking is the leading cause. In addition to lung cancer, smoking can cause other health problems, like heart disease and respiratory diseases. More than 34 million people in the U.S. still smoke tobacco, but quitting smoking can help prevent these health problems. You can quit smoking today, and Medicare can help.

4 things to consider when comparing Medicare plans

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Know how to take antibiotics the right way

Welcome back to cold and flu season! But remember, if you get sick, taking antibiotics won’t always help. If you get a cold or flu, antibiotics could do more harm than good. That’s because these are viral infections, and antibiotics only fight bacterial infections. Every time you take antibiotics, they kill sensitive bacteria, but resistant germs can survive to grow and multiply. These resistant germs are called “antibiotic-resistant,” and they can lead to severe infections, hospitalizations, and death, especially among people over 65.

This week is Antibiotic Awareness Week. Here are 3 things you can do to make sure you’re using antibiotics the right way: