Can I Laminate My Medicare Card?

Fact Checked
Contributing expert: Travis Price, Medicare consultant
Published: March 15, 2022

Travis Price
Travis Price:
Medicare consultant
Travis Price:
Medicare consultant

Travis Price is a licensed independent health insurance agent specializing in Medicare private insurance programs, including Medicare Advantage and Part D drug plans. Price has been in the Medicare industry since 2004, first in South Carolina and now in the Traverse City, Michigan, area.

Can You Laminate Your Medicare Card?

There are no regulations or laws that disallow you from laminating your card. However, it’s made of paper, so providers may have an easier time scanning your card.

If laminating your card makes it difficult to read information or your provider is unable to scan a good copy of your card, you may be required to replace it.

Many people believe that the Medicare card follows the same restrictions as a Social Security card. Social Security cards have additional security features that are blocked when laminated. The Social Security Administration directs people not to laminate their Social Security cards. However, this does not apply to Medicare cards.

What Is the Best Way To Protect Your Medicare Card?

The easiest way to protect your Medicare card is to use a plastic ID holder. This holder will allow you to protect your Medicare card without limiting the security features associated with it. You can also leave it at home instead of carrying it in your wallet – you’ll just need to remember to bring it to appointments, especially with new providers.

Can You Get a Plastic Medicare Card?

Medicare does not sell plastic Medicare cards and will not contact you to verify your information. Plastic Medicare cards are usually a scam where you are the target of identity theft.

Research any company carefully that you decide to do business with concerning printing a plastic copy of your Medicare card. Companies online may pretend to be reputable businesses offering a service, but they are trying to steal your Medicare card information for fraudulent purposes.

Some state insurance departments have even received reports of scammers targeting Medicare beneficiaries by attempting to get them to pay a fee to purchase a “new” plastic Medicare card by pretending to be representatives of Medicare.

However, if you join a Medicare Advantage Plan (or other Medicare health plan), you may receive a plastic card. You will use that card in place of your Medicare card to get services from your doctors and other providers.

How Do You Replace a Lost or Ruined Medicare Card?

If you need to replace your Medicare card, you can do it in one of three ways.

If you are a nonrailroad retirement member of Medicare, you can use the information below:

  • Visit the Medicare website: You can print an official Medicare card right from your computer. This is the fastest and easiest way to get a copy of your Medicare card.
  • Contact Medicare directly: You can contact Medicare at (800) MEDICARE or (800) 633-4227 to order a replacement card. This number is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for your convenience.
  • Contact the Social Security Administration: Go to your local Social Security office and request a copy of your Medicare card.

If you’re receiving Medicare benefits under the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB), these are your options:

  • Visit the RRB Online website and request a new Medicare card be sent out.
  • Contact the RRB at (877) 772-5772.
  • Go onto the Medicare website and print an official copy of your card instantly. If you wait for your card to come in the mail, it can take up to 30 days for you to receive it.

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