How to Get a Medicare Card

Medicare is a federal program that provides health and prescription drug coverage to people age 65 and older, those in the end stages of renal disease and the disabled. Medicare has three parts: Part A for hospital expenses, Part B for medical supplies and doctor's appointments and Part D for prescription drugs. Parts B and D require monthly premiums and if you do not enroll in these parts when you first become eligible, you will have to pay higher monthly premiums as a penalty. The Social Security Administration (SSA) administers the Medicare program.

Go to the SSA website. Click "Medicare" at the top of the page. On the following page, click the "Apply for Medicare Benefits" link.

Fill in the bubbles that ask if you are applying for your self of assisting someone and if you have visual impairments. Click the "Privacy Act Statement" link and check the box next to the link when you are finished reading the statement. Click the "Apply for Benefits" icon.

Follow the application and give information such as your name, address and date of birth. Provide information on your work history, income, medical history and any disabilities.

Verify that you gave the correct information on the final page of the application and click the "Submit" icon. Usually, you do not need to provide any additional information and you will receive your Medicare card approximately 30 days after you apply.