Sept. 26, 2017: CMS Unveils New Medicare Card

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services recently revealed the new design of beneficiaries’ Medicare cards, which will be distributed beginning next April.

The card was redesigned to replace Social Security numbers with new, unique Medicare numbers. The reveal of the new design coincided with the release of the 2018 Medicare & You Handbook, which people with Medicare will receive throughout the month of September.

“The goal of the initiative to remove Social Security numbers from Medicare cards is to help prevent fraud, combat identity theft and safeguard taxpayer dollars,” said CMS Administrator Seema Verma.

Once beneficiaries receive their new cards with the alphanumeric identification number, they will be instructed to safely destroy their previous Medicare card. Healthcare providers will be expected to be ready to use the new cards as soon as they are mailed beginning in April 2018, but a 21-month transition window will be in place where the Social Security number will also be accepted by the program.

For more information on the roll-out of the new Medicare cards and identification numbers, visit the CMS website.