Ocean County Press Release

TOMS RIVER – Freeholder Joseph H. Vicari said many Ocean County seniors have already received their new Medicare cards. Those who have not should see their new cards delivered soon.

"It takes about a month for everyone in a mailing area to receive their new cards," said Vicari, who is Chairman of the Ocean County Department of Senior Services. "We expect all of our Ocean County seniors to have their cards by the end of the summer."

The new red, white and blue documents include the exact same benefits as the older cards," Vicari stressed.

"There is absolutely no change in the coverage. The new cards are simply more secure and will help guard against identity theft," he said.

For instance, the new cards no longer include Social Security numbers. Instead, each recipient now has a unique claim number.

"Everyone who has received a new card should immediately destroy their old card," Vicari said.

Doctors, hospitals and other medical facilities are already accepting the new cards, said Maria La Face, director of the Department of Senior Services.

"And don't worry, if you haven't yet received your new card, the old cards are still accepted as well," she said.

While the new cards are more secure than the old ones, Vicari said the change will not completely stop scammers from trying to steal personal information from seniors.

"Medicare will never call and ask for your claim number," he said. "Under no circumstances ever reveal private information over the phone."

Vicari said anyone with Medicare-related questions can contact the Ocean County Office of Senior Services at 1-800-668-4899

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