Your Medicare card identifies you as a Medicare member. You are assigned a unique Medicare number that only applies to you. Your card proves that you have Medicare Part A (hospital) and Part B (medical). It also shows when your Medicare coverage began. If you are enrolled in a Medicare Supplement plan, it is also important to show that card when seeking treatment from a doctor or hospital. Showing this card allows your doctor or hospital to bill your Medigap plan for out-of-pocket costs.
If you are enrolled in a Medicare Part D plan, you will receive a separate card to present to the pharmacy for your prescription medications. If you enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan, you will show this card when seeking treatment, not your red, white, and blue card (Original Medicare card).
Original Medicare Insurance Cards
Between April 2018 and April 2019, the CMS issued new Original Medicare cards. These new cards no longer use your social security number as your personal identifier but assign you a Medicare number that is unique only to you. Your new card is also made of paper, allowing your physician’s office or hospital to easily make copies of your card.
Medicare Advantage Insurance Cards
Medicare Advantage plans, or Medicare Part C, are issued separate insurance cards. You must be enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan, therefore you will also be issued an Original Medicare card that proves you are enrolled in Part A and Part B insurance. When you enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan, you must provide certain information:
- Your Medicare number
- The date your Medicare Part A and/or Part B coverage began.
When you seek treatment for an illness or injury, you should present your Medicare Advantage card, not your Original Medicare card. If your Medicare Advantage plan includes prescription drug coverage, then you will only be issued one card to present at both doctors/hospitals and pharmacies.
Medicare Part D Insurance Cards
If you enroll in Original Medicare and a stand-alone Medicare Part D plan, you will receive two separate insurance cards. Your Original Medicare card will cover your hospital and medical treatments, and your Medicare Part D card will cover the prescriptions you fill at your pharmacy.
What Do I Do With My Medicare Card If I Have Other Insurance?
If you are enrolled in other health insurance, you still need to keep your Medicare card with you. When seeking treatment from a doctor or a hospital, you will need to present your insurance card from your employer or union group plan and your Medicare card to ensure you receive coverage from both plans. This allows your claims to be filed on both insurances. Your insurance will then coordinate benefits. This helps lower the amount of your out-of-pocket costs.
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Our team of Medicare experts is here to make sure you understand your Medicare options and how you can use your Medicare card to ensure you get the coverage you need. For more information, give us a call today!