New Medicare Cards Are Coming. What you need to know.

Sample Medicare CardHave you heard that medicare cards without social security numbers are coming soon?  

Starting in April 2018, Medicare will begin mailing new cards to everyone who gets Medicare benefits.  Why?  To help protect your identity, Medicare is removing Social Security numbers from Medicare cards.  Instead, the new cards will have a unique Medicare Number.  This will happen automatically.  You don’t need to do anything or pay anyone to get your new card.  However, be aware of scams.  Here’s what you need to know to protect yourself and your loved ones.

 

First of all, the new Medicare card will come to you in the mail.  You don’t need to request it or do anything.  It will show up.  If you need to update your official mailing address, visit your online Social Security account or call 1-800-772-1213.  When you get your new card, your Medicare coverage and benefits will stay the same.

The cards will be mailed in waves, to various parts of the country, from April 2018 until April 2019.  So, your card may arrive at a different time than someone else’s.  You can check the rollout schedule to get a better idea when you may be receiving yours.

When you get your new card, be sure to destroy your old card. Don’t just toss it in the trash. Shred it. If you have a separate Medicare Advantage card, keep that because you’ll still need it for treatment.

WHAT’S THE SCAM?

Somebody from “MEDICARE ” will call to tell you are getting a new Medicare card. But until it comes you will need a temporary card. Fee for the card is between $5-50 dollars. They want personal information, bank account or credit card so they can process your temporary card.

THINGS TO REMEMBER

– Medicare will never call you unless you ask them to.
– Medicare does all communications by mail unless you ask them to call.
– Ditto for anybody saying they “work with Medicare to make sure you get everything you are entitled to.” Scammer alert.

HOW TO PROTECT YOURSELF?

– First of all, spread the word. Feel free to share these notes.
– Use your answering machine to screen calls or just don’t even answer a number you don’t recognize.
 

If it has happened to you or your loved ones and personal info had been given out (happens considerably more often than you think so don’t feel bad or stupid) immediately take action to protect yourself against identity theft.

For more information about changes to your Medicare card go to go.medicare.gov/newcard. And if you’re a victim of a scam, report it to the FTC.

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