Annual Wellness Exam

Preventive care is important at every age.

Annual wellness exams and preventive health screenings evaluate your current health status to determine your risk for developing certain health conditions. There are screenings that check for a variety of conditions, everything from bone and breast health to colorectal and reproductive health.

Why it’s important

Getting an annual wellness exam allows your doctor to identify and treat health concerns before they become serious. Generally, the sooner your doctor can identify and treat a medical condition, the better the outcome. According to the Centers for Disease Control, if every adult in the United States received recommended preventive screenings, more than 100,000 lives could be saved each year.

Adult screenings

Recommended preventive care services for adults vary based on age, health history and other factors. Your annual wellness exam may include the following:

  • Weight assessment and nutrition counseling.
  • Depression screening.
  • Vital signs check, including blood pressure, heart rate and respiration rate.
  • Cholesterol screening every five years beginning at age 40.
  • Heart and lung exam to help detect any abnormalities.
  • Diabetes screening beginning at age 40. If you have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, are overweight or have a close family history of diabetes, you may need an earlier screening.
  • Colon cancer screening. Discuss timing with your doctor. 

Women’s health

Women have their own unique health care needs. To stay well, they should make regular screenings a priority. Women should discuss these recommendations with their doctor.

Women's Recommendations

MammogramEvery year for women beginning at age 40.
CholesterolAges 30-35 should be tested if at high risk. Women ages 45 and over should be tested.
Pap TestWomen ages 21-65. Pap test every three years. Another option for ages 30-65. Pap test and HPV test every five years. Women who have had a hysterectomy or are over age 65 may not need a Pap test. 
Osteoporosis ScreeningBeginning at age 65, or at age 60 if risk factors are present.
Aspirin UseAt ages 50-79, talk with your doctor about the benefits and risks of aspirin use.
Pelvic ExamEvery year for ages 21 and older. 

Men’s health

Men should get annual wellness exams even if they don’t have symptoms. Engage in a healthy lifestyle and complete recommended preventive care services. Discuss your specific health recommendations with your doctor.

Men's Recommendations

CholesterolAges 20-35 should be tested if at a high risk. Men ages 35 and over should be tested.
Abdominal Aortic AneurysmOnce between ages 65 and 75 if you have ever smoked.
Aspirin UseAt ages 50-79, talk with your doctor about the benefits and risks of aspirin use. 

Childhood screenings

Recommended preventive care services for children vary based on age. They may include the following:

  • Age-appropriate well-child exam.
  • Weight assessment and nutrition counseling.
  • Yearly wellness exam, beginning at age three.
  • Hearing, vision and other screening tests will be part of some visits.
  • Fluoride application for children under age 6.
  • Age-appropriate vaccines and immunizations, including those for rotavirus, polio, rubella, HPV and influenza. For complete details, visit

Preventive care pays off in the FOCUSfwd* Wellness Incentive Program

With FOCUS Points you get a $70 reward when you complete the following activities that are important to improving your overall health: personal health assessment, annual wellness exam, and preventive screening or flu vaccine. You'll also receive 40 Sweepstakes entries, increasing your chances of winning one of our $1,000 quarterly and $5,000 annual cash rewards

To get started, you'll need to:

  • Within FOCUSfwd, select FOCUS Points
  • Start by completing your personal health assessment.
  • The annual wellness exam, preventive screenings, and your flu shot will automatically be rewarded when your claim has been processed. You may also self-report your flu shot. 

Don't forget to log in to FOCUSfwd to make sure you don't miss any winner notifications!

*All FOCUSfwd programs are calendar-year programs and will restart annually. 

The CDC is an independent organization that offers health information you may find helpful.