The Center saw little action on Monday and Tuesday, because of the bad weather, but by the end of the week people were back eating lunch and playing cards. We are all looking forward to warmer weather so we don’t have to worry about a fall each time we venture out.

I don’t have much news this week but there is one thing you may not yet be aware of. Starting in April all Medicare recipients will be receiving new cards. The scheduled timeframe is between April 2018 and April 2019, in phases by geographic area, so don’t worry if yours does not arrive until later. We will no longer have our SS number on the card, but will have a Personal Medicare Number to help prevent identity theft. Congress authorized this change in 2015.

You don’t need to do anything to get a new card, but you should make sure your mailing address is up to date. If updates are needed, visit or call 1-800-772-1213. Medicare will NEVER call and ask for personal information before sending new cards, so be careful not to share your personal information if someone calls and asks for it. The new cards are, of course, free of charge, so also be careful if someone should ask you for money.

You should destroy your old card when you receive your new one. Take it with you to medical appointments with doctors and other providers, because your new number will be necessary for all billing, eligibility and reimbursements.

We seniors receive phone calls every day, trying to sell us something, so please continue to be vigilant about not giving out information. Hang up or tell them you would like to think it over first.