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Seeing your doctor in a disaster or emergency

I have Original Medicare

If you have Original Medicare, you may always see any doctor who accepts Medicare. Some rules may change for an emergency or disaster area in certain situations. For example, you may be able to get Medicare-covered services at an airport from a military provider. Call us at 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) to get more information about seeing doctors during a disaster or emergency.

I have a Medicare Advantage Plan or other Medicare health plan

Your plan may make temporary changes to its rules when health plan services get disrupted during an emergency or disaster. Check your plan's website or contact your plan to find out if: 

  • Your plan will allow you to see certain doctors or go to certain hospitals that accept Medicare patients, even if the doctor or hospital isn't in your plan's network and your health care need isn't an emergency. If you have problems using an out-of-network doctor or provider, contact your plan for help.
  • Your plan won't require you to follow your plan's prior authorization rules for out-of-network services.
  • If you usually pay more for out-of-network or out-of-area care, your plan will apply the in-network rate during the emergency or disaster period. If your plan agrees to apply the in-network rate and later on you go to an out-of-area or out-of-network provider and pay more for the service, save the receipt and ask your plan to give you a refund for the difference.

Contact your plan as soon as possible to find out if there are other changes in plan rules and to find out when the emergency or disaster will be over.

Get your plan's contact information from a Personalized Search (under General Search), or search by plan name. You can also call us at 1-800-MEDICARE.

More about getting care in a disaster or emergency

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Paying your premium in a disaster or emergency

Getting dialysis in a disaster or emergency

Getting cancer treatments in a disaster or emergency

Replacing a lost card in a disaster or emergency

Replacing lost or damaged equipment or supplies in a disaster or emergency