New Medicare cards with random numbers are on the way and so are new card scams, warns the Massachusetts Senior Medicare Patrol Program
LAWRENCE, Mass., April 11, 2018 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Massachusetts Senior Medicare Patrol Program warns those on Medicare not to fall victim of scams offering to speed up the delivery of their new Medicare card.
"Your current Medicare number will work until December 31, 2019, and no one can speed up the distribution system for any amount of money," said Lucilia Prates, the director of the Massachusetts Senior Medicare Patrol Program. "Furthermore, Medicare will not call you to verify your personal information so if someone calls purporting to be from Medicare, hang up the phone."
Those beneficiaries who have moved recently should make sure their mailing address is up to date with the Social Security Administration so their new Medicare card doesn't get lost in the mail, Prates noted. The Social Security Administration manages contact information for Medicare. To change or update a mailing address, go to www.SSA.gov or call 800-772-1213.
Prates said, "Medicare will begin mailing new cards this April to all 58 million Medicare beneficiaries but it will take a full year for everyone on Medicare to get their new cards. Because the distribution system is intentionally random, it is possible members of the same household will get their new Medicare cards at a different time."
Medicare is replacing Social Security numbers with random, unique numbers to reduce opportunities for identity theft and to reduce erroneous and fraudulent claims.
Once a beneficiary receives their new Medicare card with their unique number, they should shred their old Medicare card.
For questions, concerns, or to report a scam related to the Medicare cards call the Massachusetts Senior Medicare Patrol (MA SMP) Program at 800-892-0890. Visit Medicare.gov to check on the latest updates and distribution of new Medicare cards.
About the Massachusetts Senior Medicare Patrol Program
The Massachusetts Senior Medicare Patrol Program is a statewide partnership with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Executive Office of Elder Affairs, Massachusetts Attorney General's Office and local law enforcement to reach and educate beneficiaries and encourage engagement in their healthcare experiences and report questionable billing, potential cases of illegal marketing, and other deceptive sales tactics. Learn more about the MA SMP Program at www.MaSMP.org.