When you’re enrolled in Medicare, you’ll get your red, white, and blue Medicare card in the mail. If you're automatically enrolled, you'll get your red, white, and blue Medicare card in the mail 3 months before your 65th birthday or your 25th month of getting disability benefits. Your Medicare card shows that you have Medicare health insurance. It shows whether you have Part A (Hospital Insurance), Part B (Medical Insurance) or both, and it shows the date your coverage starts.
Be sure to carry your card with you when you’re away from home. Let your doctor, hospital, or other health care provider see your card when you need hospital, medical or other health services.
5 things to know about your Medicare card
- Your card has a Medicare Number that’s unique to you, instead of your Social Security Number. This helps to protect your identity.
- Your card is paper, which is easier for many providers to use and copy.
- If you’re in a Medicare Advantage Plan (like an HMO or PPO), your Medicare Advantage Plan ID card is your main card for Medicare—you should still keep and use it whenever you need care. And, if you have a Medicare drug plan, be sure to keep that card as well. Even if you use one of these other cards, you also may be asked to show your Medicare card, so keep it with you.
- Only give your Medicare Number to doctors, pharmacists, other health care providers, your insurers, or people you trust to work with Medicare on your behalf.
- If you forget your card, you, your doctor or other health care provider may be able to look up your Medicare Number online.
Watch out for scams
Medicare will never call you uninvited and ask you to give us personal or private information.
Scam artists may try to get personal information, like your Medicare Number. If someone asks you for your information, for money, or threatens to cancel your health benefits if you don’t share your personal information, hang up and call us at 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). Learn more about the limited situations in which Medicare can call you.
How can I replace my Medicare card?
If you need to replace your card because it’s damaged or lost, sign in to your MyMedicare.gov account to print an official copy of your Medicare card. If you don’t have an account, visit MyMedicare.gov to create one.
If you need to replace your card because you think that someone else is using your number, call us at 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). TTY users can call 1-877-486-2048.
How do I change my name or address?
Medicare uses the name and address you have on file with Social Security. To change your name and/or address, visit your online my Social Security account.
Medicare is managed by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). Social Security works with CMS by enrolling people in Medicare.