New Medicare cards to be issued to beneficiaries

Between April, 2018 and April, 2019, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services will mail new paper Medicare cards to all people with Medicare.  When you or your representative receive the new Medicare card, please bring it to Westside Terrace Healthcare’s business office so we will have your new information on file.

To make them more secure, the new cards have a new unique Medicare number instead of a Social Security number. Although the cards will look different, your coverage and benefits will remain the same.  Starting this month, the new cards will be mailed to the beneficiary’s address on file with the Social Security Administration, so it’s important that your mailing address is correct.

If a beneficiary is in a Medicare Advantage Plan, their Medicare Advantage Plan ID card is their main card for Medicare — they should still keep and use it whenever they need care. However, they also may be asked to show the new Medicare card, so they should carry this card too.

Keep your information safe

After getting their new card, beneficiaries should take steps to safeguard their information and make it harder to have their identities stolen:

  • Destroy the old Medicare card.
  • Only give the new Medicare number to doctors, pharmacists, other health care providers, insurers, or people you trust to work with Medicare on your behalf.
  • Use the new card right away. Doctors, other health care providers, and plans approved by Medicare know that Medicare is replacing the old cards and are ready to accept the new ones.
  • Beware of people contacting you about your new Medicare card and asking you for your Medicare number, personal information, or to pay a fee for your new card.
  • If you think someone is trying to steal your identity or otherwise commit fraud related to the new Medicare cards, you can report them to your local Senior Medicare Patrol. To find your local patrol, go to smpresource.org. In Alabama, the patrol can be contacted at 1-877-425-2243 and found online at http://www.alabamasmp.gov/.
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