Select States and Territories to Be First to Receive New Medicare Cards

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced its mailing strategy over the course of 2018 for the new Medicare cards that contain beneficiary numbers that replace Social Security numbers. Practices, facilities, and payers in states slated for a mail drop later in the year have a few more months to prepare and test their systems to make sure they recognize the new numbers.

The first mailing "wave" will include beneficiaries in the District of Columbia and just five eastern states (Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia) starting in April and ending in June 2018. Beneficiaries in Alaska, Hawaii, Oregon, California, and some American territories will receive their cards in the second wave, also slated for April through June of 2018. The rest of the states and territories are schedule to receive cards in five more mailing waves beginning after June.

Starting in April, Medicare beneficiaries will be able to go on to check the status of the card mailings in their state or territory. All cards will be mailed by April 2019, and providers must be able to process the new Medicare beneficiary identifiers (MBIs) by the end of the transition period in December 2019.

Mailing Wave - Date - State or Territory
1 - April-June ‘18 - DC, DE, MD, PA, VA, WV
2 - April-June ‘18 - AK, HI, OR, CA, American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands
3 - July ‘18-April ‘19 - AR, IL, IN, IA, KS, MN, NE, ND, OK, SD, WI
4 - July ‘18-April ‘19 - CT, ME, MA, NH, NJ, NY, RI, VT
5 - July ‘18-April ‘19 - AL, FL, GA, NC, SC
6 - July ‘18-April ‘19 - AZ, CO, ID, MT, NV, NM, TX, UT, WA, WY
7 - July ‘18-April ‘19 - KY, LA, MI, MS, MO, OH, TN, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands

For information on how to prepare for the MBIs, go to

Source: Optum360