New Medicare Cards Are Coming

Medicare Card NewThe Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) of 2015, requires us to remove Social Security Numbers (SSNs) from all Medicare cards by April 2019. A new Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI) will replace the SSN-based Health Insurance Claim Number (HICN) on the new Medicare cards for Medicare transactions like billing, eligibility status, and claim status.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is the governmental agency that administers Medicare.

  • The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA) requires that CMS remove the Social Security Number from Medicare cards by April 2019.
  • The Social Security Number-based identifier (HICN) on Medicare cards will be replaced with a new Medicare number (MBI). The new cards will also have a new design and omit the gender and signature from the card.

The primary goal is to decrease the vulnerability of Medicare beneficiaries to identity theft and prevent taxpayer fraud.

  • HICN – The Social Security Number-based Health Insurance Claim Number (HICN), being removed from Medicare cards.
  • MBI – The new randomly-generated Medicare number replacing the HICN on Medicare cards and in Medicare systems; also known as the Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI).
New Medicare Card Mailing Strategy:

 The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is required to remove Social Security Numbers (SSNs) from all Medicare cards by April 2019. A new, unique Medicare Number will replace the SSN-based Health Insurance Claim Number (HICN) on each new Medicare card. Starting April 2018, CMS will begin mailing new Medicare cards to all people with Medicare on a flow basis by geographic location and other factors.

New Medicare Card Mailing Waves Wave

States Included

Cards Mailing


Delaware, District of Columbia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia

April – June 2018


Alaska, American Samoa, California, Guam, Hawaii, Northern Mariana Islands, Oregon

April – June 2018


Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Wisconsin

After June 2018


Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont

After June 2018


Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina

After June 2018


Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Utah, Washington, Wyoming

After June 2018


Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio, Puerto Rico, Tennessee, Virgin Islands

After June 2018


Exceptions Claims submitted to Medicare after December 31, 2019 must use the beneficiary’s new Medicare number (MBI), with these exceptions:

  • Appeals
  • Adjustments
  • Span-Date Claims and Requests for Anticipated Payments (RAPs)
  • Reports: Outgoing (such as the Provider Statistical & Reimbursement Report, ACO reports, and Incoming (such as Quality Reporting, Disproportionate Share Hospital Data Requests)
  • Incoming Information Requests
  • Incoming Premium Payments
  • HICN can be used indefinitely for some systems (Drug Data Processing, Risk Adjustment Processing, and Encounter Data)

For more information: CLICK HERE

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