Medicare Cards: Everything You Need to Know

By Brian Krantz - March 4, 2023

your medicare card

Are you enrolled in Medicare? Then you should have received a red, white, and blue Medicare card. In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about your Medicare card, from what information it contains to how to use it.

What Information Does Your Medicare Card Contain?

Your Medicare card lists your name, your Medicare number, and the dates that your Original Medicare hospital insurance (Part A) and medical insurance (Part B) began. If you get Medicare through the Railroad Retirement Board, your card will say Railroad Retirement Board at the bottom.

Why is Your Medicare Card Important?

If you have Original Medicare, it’s essential to bring your card with you when you visit doctors and hospitals so that they can submit bills to Medicare for payment. It’s also crucial to show your supplemental insurance plan’s card, like a Medigap, retiree, or union plan, to your doctor or hospital, so they can bill the plan for your out-of-pocket costs.

If you’re enrolled in a Part D plan (Medicare prescription drug benefit), you will use the Part D plan’s card at the pharmacy.

If you’re enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan (like an HMO, PPO, or PFFS), you will use your Medicare Advantage Plan card when you go to the doctor or hospital. You will also use this card at the pharmacy if your plan serves as your Part D coverage. If you have a supplemental insurance plan, like a retiree or union plan, make sure to show that plan’s card to your doctor or hospital, too.

What If You Haven’t Received Your Medicare Card?

If you’re a Medicare beneficiary and haven’t received your new Medicare card, don’t worry. Medicare has finished mailing new Medicare cards to all beneficiaries, but you can still use your old card to get your care covered until January 1, 2020. However, if you haven’t received your new card, you should call 1-800-MEDICARE (633-4227) and speak to a representative.

What If You Lose Your Medicare Card?

If your Medicare card is lost, stolen, or damaged, you can get a replacement card by calling 1-800-MEDICARE (633-4227) or by logging into your account to order or print a card. It’s also essential to keep a photocopy of your important identification and insurance cards, write down any important numbers (like your Medicare number), and keep everything in a safe place so that you have a record for future reference if anything gets lost.

Protect Your Personal Information

Your Medicare card, Social Security card, and other health insurance cards are very important documents. Don’t give your Medicare or Social Security numbers or personal data to strangers. Medicare will never ask for this information over the phone.


Your Medicare card is a critical piece of identification that serves as your identification number in the Medicare system. Make sure to carry it with you when you visit doctors and hospitals and to show any supplemental insurance plan’s card to your doctor or hospital. If you haven’t received your new Medicare card, be sure to call Medicare to request a new one. Lastly, protect your personal information and report any Medicare fraud or abuse. Reach out to the Medicare advisors at Plan Medicare if you have any additional questions about your Medicare card. 


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