Here’s a few things to know about the process and your new card:
- Distribution of new cards began in April of 2018 and are being mailed based on geographic location. California users can expect to see their cards anytime from May of 2018 to April of 2019.
- Mailing takes time. Your card may arrive later than your spouse, neighbor or friend’s.
- You’ll have a new ID number that’s been randomly generated and unique to you. One of the purposes of the new card is to avoid use of Social Security numbers and protect users’ identities.
- Destroy your old card. While your old card is still valid until Dec. 21, 2019, it’s recommended that you destroy your old one and start using the new on in its place. Doctors and other health care providers and facilities know it’s coming, so carry it with you. Your benefits will remain the same.
- Don’t just discard your old card. Take the time to shred it so no one can acquire your personal information.
- The new card is made of paper, making it easier for providers to use and copy. You’ll also be able to print a replacement if you lose yours.
- Keep your plan card. If you participate in a Medicare Advantage Plan or prescription drug plan, keep that card as it’s your main card for care. But you should also keep your new Medicare card with you as well.
- Beware of scams. No one from Medicare will be contacting you via phone to get more information. If you do receive such a call it may be a scam. You do not need to provide any information to anyone to receive your new card. There is no fee associated with the card either and anyone asking for payment or banking information may also be a scammer.
- If you don’t receive your new card by April of 2019 or if you need any additional assistance, call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). TTY Users can call 1-877-486-2048.