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Georgia Medicare Beneficiaries Should Get Vaccinated

Ruzanna Harutyunyan's picture

October through May is flu season and the Georgia Department of Human Resources, Division of Aging Services (DAS) Georgia Cares program is reminding Medicare beneficiaries to talk to their healthcare providers about getting vaccinated to prevent getting the flu and the pneumococcal disease, which is the cause of the most common form of pneumonia. The flu and pneumococcal vaccines are both covered by Medicare, so beneficiaries are not required to make a co-payment.

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"One of the best ways to prevent getting the flu is to receive a flu vaccine," said Maria Greene, director of the Division of Aging Services. "Seniors who are on Medicare do not have to pay for the vaccine; Medicare should be billed for it. We encourage all Medicare beneficiaries to call GeorgiaCares toll-free at 1-800-669-8387 if anyone bills Medicare and attempts to charge them for a flu vaccine."

The flu, a contagious respiratory illness, can cause mild to severe illness and may at times lead to death. Getting a flu vaccination is the best way to prevent the flu. Older adults, young children, and people with certain health conditions such as diabetes, asthma, and heart disease are at high risk for serious flu complications, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Medicare beneficiaries should take the following precautions: avoid close contact with people who are sick; stay home when you are sick; frequently wash your hands; cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing; and avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.