You may have heard that Medicare will be distributing new Medicare red, white and blue cards between April of 2018 and April of 2019. While the ones distributed up until now have had individuals’ Social Security Numbers on them, the new ones will replace this feature with a randomly assigned Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI) made up of 11 letters and numbers. Additionally, the new Medicare cards will not include your gender or signature. Changing the format of the Medicare Numbers and other card features will help prevent fraud and fight identity theft.
Medicare cards are delivered in the mail three months before your 65th birthday if you are automatically enrolled. The purpose of your Medicare card is to show that you have Medicare insurance—Original Medicare Parts A & B, specifically. Medicare beneficiaries will have until December 31, 2019 to start using their new cards. Both the new card and your current card will be valid until then.
3 Things to Know About the New Medicare Cards:
- Your new card will be delivered in the mail. No action is required on your part.
- Your Medicare coverage and benefits will remain the same.
- Your new card is free—you do not need to pay for it.
Steps to Take to Prepare for the Transition
- Make sure your mailing address is up-to-date. To correct or update your address, contact Social Security at 1-800-772-1213.
- Know that Medicare will never call and ask you for personal information in exchange for your new Medicare Number and card. Beware of people who are scamming Medicare beneficiaries. Call RetireMEDiQ’s Client Services team if someone contacts you and requests personal information under the guise of being a Medicare representative.
- Be patient in receiving your new card. Your card may not come at the same time as your neighbor’s or friend’s.
Read more about the new Medicare cards, or if you have questions about the new Medicare cards or about your Medicare coverage, contact our Client Services team at 1-877-222-1942 or firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are not yet a RetireMEDiQ client, reach out to our team of licensed Benefit Advisors to start your conversation about the transition to Medicare at 1-866-600-5638 or email@example.com.