Medicare recipients in Iowa are getting new handbooks in the mail this month detailing several new options in the program this fall. Jennifer Magyar, a Medicare administrator for Iowa, says a new initiative called “My Health, My Medicare” is devoted to helping beneficiaries be healthier and more knowledgeable.

Magyar says there’s a “Welcome to Medicare” physical exam for everyone in their first six months of joining Medicare, there are new screenings for cardiovascular disease and diabetes, smoking cessation counseling and a number of other pluses. She says it’s vital that people, especially older Iowans, get frequent health check-ups since early detection of a problem can often bring a swifter cure and a higher survival rate.

Magyar says “These preventive services are a way to find out early on some issues that someone with Medicare is having out there. What a great opportunity to start to address those now and get the care that they need so they can live a longer, healthier life.” If you don’t have one of the booklets yet, more information is available at the website “www.medicare.gov”.