4 Misconceptions (and 1 Important Truth) About Preventive Care

Don’t let these misconceptions keep you from using your benefits

Most people take comfort knowing that their health plan will be there for them if they get sick. But some people don’t know that their plan has preventive care benefits to keep them healthy. Preventive care is intended to prevent or catch medical conditions early. Preventive care includes annual doctor visits, screenings, immunizations, and more.

So, why do only 62% of U.S. residents make an appointment for a preventive care visit – despite over 90% saying it’s important to get one? Read on to bust these four misconceptions about preventive care – and learn one important truth.

1. Preventive care is too expensive

Good news! Preventive care is covered by most health plans at no extra cost when members receive services from providers in their plan’s network. Depending on your age and gender, this can include recommended screenings and tests, such as mammograms and colonoscopies. Look at your plan’s Evidence of Coverage or Certificate of Insurance so you know exactly what’s covered. Health plans also have a list of providers that are in the plan’s network.

2. It’s too hard to know which preventive care services I need and when I need them

Some screenings and immunizations are required every year, while others are due every few years. It can be confusing to keep track of which screenings and immunizations you need. But there’s one preventive care benefit that’s always consistent – your annual wellness or preventive care visit. Your primary care provider can help you know if and when it’s time to seek certain services – and your annual visit is the perfect time to make a preventive care plan for the year. 

3. It’s too confusing to schedule a preventive care appointment

Scheduling an appointment with your doctor is a great first step towards getting preventive care. Your doctor’s information is usually found on your Blue Shield member ID card or via your online account. You can also search for doctors in your plan’s network using the Find a doctor tool. During your visit, your doctor can refer you to labs, pharmacies, and other facilities to get the preventive care services you need. You can also call your health plan’s customer care number to find out where to get services in your plan’s network.

4. I’m too busy to deal with preventive care, and I’m not even sick

The best time to protect your health is before you become ill. Time spent now getting screenings and immunizations can help save you from more serious health issues down the road. In fact, some screenings are available as at-home tests – making preventive care easier and more convenient. And remember when you’re sick, you have to spend time going to the doctor, getting prescriptions, managing treatment –­ all while taking time off from work. Prevention can help you save time and money in the long run because it can keep you healthy. That way, you can spend more time doing what matters most.

The most important truth about preventive care is that it can possibly save your life.

Think about getting a vaccination against a life-threatening illness, such as COVID-19 or the flu. Or consider the possibility that your doctor could detect signs of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or diabetes before it becomes a serious issue. Some cancers, such as breast  and colon, have a much higher survival rate if caught early. 

So remember: preventive care is not just another perk in your plan – it’s one of the most important benefits for helping you maintain your overall health, well-being, and quality of life. 

Ready to take the next step?

Call your doctor to make an appointment, or log into your online account to see if you are due for a visit or screening. 
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