In a move to combat medical identity theft, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is issuing new cards that no longer include Social Security numbers.

The cards will be mailed to beneficiaries in waves, depending on which state you live in.

The SSN-based Health Insurance Claim Number (HICN) is being replaced with a Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI).  MBIs are generated on a random basis and do not carry any unique or special identifiers that link back to the card owner.

As soon as you receive your new Medicare card, you can destroy your old card and start using your new card immediately.  Although the cards are new, all of your existing benefits and coverage will remain the same.

Medicare will automatically mail your new card for free to the address you have on file with Social Security. Go here if you need to update your address.

Here’s a breakdown of when you can expect to receive your new card:

Wave
States
Cards Mailing
1
Delaware, District of Columbia, Maryland, Pennsylvania,
Virginia, West Virginia
April – June 2018
2
Alaska, American Samoa, California, Guam, Hawaii,
Northern Mariana Islands, Oregon
April – June 2018
3
Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota,
Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota,
Wisconsin
After June 2018
4
Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire,
New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont
After June 2018
5
Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina,
South Carolina
After June 2018
6
Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada,
New Mexico, Texas, Utah, Washington, Wyoming
After June 2018
7
Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio,
Puerto Rico, Tennessee, Virgin Islands
After June 2018

To learn more about your new Medicare card, go here