Not everyone is automatically enrolled in Medicare. If you’re getting close to 65 and aren’t yet receiving retirement benefits, you’ll need to manually enroll in Medicare Part A or Part B during your Initial Enrollment Period (IEP).
Your IEP starts three months before the month you turn 65 and ends three months after. If you’re approved, you should receive your Medicare card in the mail within 30 days.
If you’ve lost your Medicare ID card, or if it was damaged or stolen, you can request a new card by using one of the following methods:
If you are living or traveling outside the US, you can still request a replacement Medicare Card online or by phone or you can contact the nearest US consulate or embassy
Your new Medicare ID card should arrive in the mail in about 30 days. If, however, you need health care services or equipment sooner than that, you can request a temporary letter as proof of enrollment in Medicare. To get a temporary letter of proof, you’ll need to visit your local Social Security Administration office in person.
Medicare Part C and Part D are health insurance plans regulated by the federal government that you can purchase through a private insurance company. People typically buy them because they cover services or medications that aren’t covered by Original Medicare.
Because of this, if you’re on a Medicare Advantage (Part C) or prescription drug (Part D) plan, you’ll receive a different Medicare ID card than your Original Medicare or red, white, and blue card. This card will generally include your private insurer’s name and logo, as well as information regarding your coverage, and you may need to show it to health care providers in order to get your services or prescriptions covered by Medicare.