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What are some characteristics of a Medicare card?

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Quick Answer

The characteristics of a Medicare card include a red, white and blue bar at the top of the card, according to the official U.S. government website for Medicare. In the white space of the bar, the words "Medicare Health Insurance" appear in blue ink, with the Medicare seal separating the words "Medicare" and "Health."

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Full Answer

Other characteristics of a Medicare card include the toll-free number for the agency written beneath the red, white and blue bar. As of 2015, it says "1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227)" in blank ink, as shown on the Medicare website. The name of the beneficiary, the Medicare claim number, the sex of the beneficiary, and the services the beneficiary is entitled to are listed on the front of the card. Below this information is a signature line for the beneficiary to add his signature.

The name of the beneficiary is the person to which the card is issued, explains Medicare.gov. This is the only person authorized to use the card. The Medicare claim number is the beneficiary's identification number, which is used to check the status of the Medicare case. It is also used by the health care provider to file an insurance claim for care. The services section lists the type of coverage for which the beneficiary is approved, and the effective dates. For example, services listed could include hospital and/or medical coverage.

The back of the Medicare card includes instructions on how to use the card, as well as the Medicare contact information and a warning notice that advises that the card is to be used solely by the beneficiary, explains Medicare.gov. The warning continues to advise that anyone using the card fraudulently is liable, and that if the card is found, it must be dropped into the nearest post office box.

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