Healthier LivingPreventive Care
Mar 4, 2024
3 Minute Read

How to Maximize Your Annual Physical Exam

Your yearly checkup, also known as an annual physical exam, is designed to assess your overall health and wellness. It’s an opportunity to discuss any concerns and screen for potential health risks. In addition, your doctor should review your immunizations, make recommendations based on your age and personal circumstances, and offer guidance concerning lifestyle choices such as diet and exercise.

What Doctors Should I See Annually?

Some doctors are important to see each year to ensure you remain in good health. These include:

  • Primary Care Provider (PCP)
  • Dentist
  • Eye doctor (optometrist/ophthalmologist)
  • Specialists based on any known chronic conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, or heart disease

Annual Exam Checklist

Before you go to the doctor for an annual checkup, make a list of any questions and notes such as:

  • Health concerns
  • Medications
  • Including dosages, time of day you take them, any side affects you may have experienced
  • Vaccinations
  • Health screenings
  • Recent hospitalizations

Different provider systems do not always share information. Make sure each of your physicians has up to date information.

Get the Most Out of Your Annual Exam

To get the most out of your annual exam, you may want to consider bringing a loved one, friend, or caregiver with you as an advocate. An advocate can take notes, help ask important follow-up questions, make sure your doctor understands your concerns and make sure you are receiving quality healthcare.

It’s important to share information with your doctor even if it feels embarrassing. Examples include:

  • Changes in your thoughts
  • Feelings of anxiety or depression
  • Changes in weight
  • Changes in appetite, food cravings, how much or how often you eat
  • Changes in bowel movements or bladder issues
  • Changes in sexual health
  • Feelings of excessive fatigue Recent falls

Click here to view and download a checklist you can take to your Annual Exam.



Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City’s Blue Medicare Advantage includes both HMO and PPO plans with Medicare contracts. Enrollment in Blue Medicare Advantage depends on contract renewal.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. The HMO products are offered by Blue-Advantage Plus of Kansas City, Inc. and the PPO products are offered by Missouri Valley Life and Health Insurance Company, both independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, and wholly-owned subsidiaries of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City.

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