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Flu season is here but it is not too late to protect your patients against the flu. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that everyone 6 months of age and older get a yearly flu vaccine. As the occurrence of the flu continues to be reported around the country, remember, every office visit is an opportunity to check your patients’ vaccination status and encourage a yearly flu vaccine for those that have not yet taken action to protect themselves and their loved ones from the flu. Vaccination is especially important for those at high risk for flu-related complications. Additionally, research shows that a strong provider recommendation for yearly flu vaccination increases a patient’s willingness to get vaccinated themselves.
Getting vaccinated is just as important for health care personnel, like you, for many reasons. You can get sick with the flu and spread it to your family, colleagues and patients without knowing or having symptoms. Be an example by getting your flu vaccine and know that you’re helping to reduce the spread of flu in your community.
Note: – the influenza and pneumococcal vaccines and their administration fees are covered Part B benefits. Influenza and pneumococcal vaccines are NOT Part D – covered drugs.
For more information:
- CMS has posted the 2012-2013 Seasonal Influenza Vaccines Pricing list. You may also refer to the MLN Matters® Article #MM8047, “Influenza Vaccine Payment Allowances – Annual Update for 2012-2013 Season.”
- Please visit the CMS Medicare Learning Network® Preventive Services Educational Products and CMS Immunizations web pages for more information on coverage and billing of the flu and pneumococcal vaccines and their administration fees.
- While some providers may offer the flu vaccine, those who don’t can help their patients locate a vaccine provider within their local community. The HealthMap Vaccine Finder is a free, online service where users can find nearby locations offering flu vaccines.
- The CDC website offers a variety of provider resources for the 2012-2013 flu season.