With depression affecting many older adults, some individuals with Medicare may be wondering if Medicare covers depression screenings. The answer is yes, Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance) covers one depression screening per year at a participating provider.
The depression screening must take place in a primary care setting (like a doctor's office) that can provide follow-up treatment and/or referrals. This screening can be when you have a scheduled doctor’s office visit such as an annual wellness visit, or you can ask your provider for a screening during a separate visit. You do not need to show signs or symptoms of depression to qualify for this screening.
The depression screening involves a questionnaire that you complete yourself or with the assistance of your doctor. It is designed to identify if you are at risk or have symptoms of depression. If the results show that you have symptoms of depression or may be at risk of depression, your doctor will perform a thorough assessment and may refer you for follow-up mental health care as appropriate.
If you or someone you know is in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255). TTY: 1-800-799-4TTY (1-800-799-4889). Call 911 if you are in immediate medical crisis.
To learn more, visit https://www.medicare.gov/coverage/depression-screening.