Under ACA, 25 Million Medicare Beneficiaries Received Free Preventive Services

CMS has announced that in the first 11 months of 2013, more than 25.4 million beneficiaries under original Medicare have received at least one preventive service, such as annual wellness visits, screening mammograms, and colonoscopies, at no cost to them, thanks to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) (P.L. 111-148).

This announcement represents an increase in the number of seniors who were able to benefit from free preventive services, as CMS reported that, in 2012, an estimated 24.7 million people received preventive benefits with no out-of-pocket costs. Additionally, between 2012 and 2013, the number of original Medicare beneficiaries who took advantage of the annual wellness visit established under the ACA jumped from 2.8 million to 3.5 million. These numbers show a notable rise in patients’ accessibility to health care, as many Medicare beneficiaries previously found it difficult to get important preventive care because of the required out-of-pocket contribution.

“Prevention and early detection are so vital to ensure that Americans are healthy and Medicare is healthy. The Affordable Care Act makes Medicare stronger and improves the wellbeing of millions of beneficiaries who have taken advantage of preventive services and wellness visits,” said CMS Administrator Marilyn Tavenner.