Medicare to Cover Depression Screening

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced last Friday that annual depression screening will be covered for Medicare beneficiaries.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced last Friday that annual depression screening will be covered for Medicare beneficiaries. The goal of the screening, which will be offered in primary care settings, is to produce accurate diagnoses and make possible effective treatment and follow-up.

Among people 65 and older, one in six suffers from depression. It is most common among those suffering from other conditions such as cancer, arthritis, stroke, chronic lung disease, and cardiovascular disease. The loss of loved ones and family members, which of course occurs more frequently with age, is also an important risk factor for depression.

CMS also announced that Medicare beneficiaries will be eligible for annual alcohol abuse screening as well as four counseling sessions per year if they are found to be abusing alcohol.

Source

Medicare Covers Screening and Counseling for Alcohol Misuse and Screening for Depression [Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services]