Who Qualifies for the Medicare Flex Card?

Who Qualifies for the Medicare Flex Card?

You may have heard of certain Medicare plans offering prepaid cards, or flex cards, promising extra cash for groceries and healthcare expenses.

You're probably curious about what they entail and, most importantly, whether you qualify for one.

Let's talk about flex cards and the plans that offer them.

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What Is a Medicare Flex Card?

A flex card is a perk offered as part of some Medicare Advantage plans to help cover expenses like over-the-counter healthcare products, groceries, and other things that original Medicare doesn't typically include.

Flex cards are not offered by the federal government as part of Medicare, only by private insurance companies.

Those private companies have the flexibility to decide which additional benefits to offer in their plan (like vision, hearing, fitness, and dental), as long as it meets the minimum requirements of Part A and Part B Medicare coverage.

What Can You Buy with a Medicare Flex Card?

Each Medicare Advantage plan that offers the flex card will ultimately determine what exactly you can purchase with the card, and how much you get to spend.

You'll have to review the details provided by each plan for specific details.

Here are some common items you can buy with the funds allocated on the card:

  • Gym membership
  • Over-the-counter healthcare products (such as toothpaste and vitamins)
  • Medical equipment
  • Non-medical transportation services
  • Eyeglasses or contact lenses
  • Hearing aids
  • Healthy groceries

Related: What Medicare Plans Offer Flex Cards in Decatur, IL?

Who Qualifies for a Medicare Flex Card?

The only qualification needed to snag a Medicare Flex Card is you must qualify for and enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan that offers a flex card.

If you're sticking with your original Medicare, this perk isn't on the table for you.

Private insurance companies like Humana, Aetna, Anthem Blue Cross, and Wellcare are the ones handing out these flex cards with select Medicare Advantage plans, but they're not available everywhere just yet.

Which Plans Offer a Flex Card?

Select Medicare Advantage offers flex cards. With nearly half of all Medicare beneficiaries choosing to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan, the popularity of these plans is on the rise.

In fact, in 2024, there are a whopping 32 Medicare Advantage Plans to choose from right here in Decatur, IL and this year, a few of them include flex cards.

Contact us for more information.

How to Get a Medicare Flex Card

To get your hands on a Medicare Flex Card, all you have to do is enroll in one of those plans during an eligible enrollment period.

Depending on your situation, there are 3 possible enrollment periods for you:

  • Initial Enrollment Period: Starts 3 months before you get Medicare and ends 3 months after you get Medicare.
  • Annual Election Period (AEP): This runs from October 15 to December 7 and is when all existing Medicare participants can change plans.
  • Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period: This runs from January 1 to March 31 each year and allows those who are already signed up for a Medicare Advantage plan to switch to a different plan.

Is a Medicare Flex Card Worth the Hype?

Before you jump on board with a plan just for the flex card, it's crucial to weigh all your options.

Remember to factor in things like copays, coinsurance, available doctors on the plan, and what you might end up paying out of pocket if you have a serious health issue or wind up in the hospital.

The added benefits of the flex card might catch your eye, but if it comes with a sky-high deductible and a limited network, you could end up paying much more than the money you get to spend on the card.

Take the time to thoroughly review the plan's healthcare benefits and weigh the pros and cons.

At Sams/Hockaday, we can run a plan comparison based on your specific healthcare needs and help you make the right call.

Beware of Flex Card Scams

Unfortunately, scammers are often targeting seniors with Medicare, especially around enrollment time.

They might try to lure you in with promises of a prepaid flex card loaded with $3000 a month for groceries and other goodies.

But here's the deal: The federal government doesn't hand out Medicare cards with cash on them. So, if someone calls claiming you're eligible for that kind of deal, hit pause and rethink things.

Also, remember that legitimate agencies selling Medicare Advantage plans have to follow strict marketing compliance guidelines like recording calls and reciting a disclaimer within the first minute of your call.

So, if you're chatting with someone who hasn't mentioned either of those, chances are you're dealing with a scammer.


Overall, Medicare Flex Cards are a nice extra if the Medicare Plan you decide is best for you includes them. But, we wouldn't recommend making them the sole reason for joining a plan.

It's always important to weigh all the benefits and options available to you before making any decisions.

As always, we're here to help guide you through all the information and choices, so feel free to reach out with any questions.

Read Next: Your Medicare ID Cards: From Supplements to Flex Cards

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Disclaimer: We do not offer every plan available in your area. Currently we represent 4 organizations which offer 41 products in your area. Please contact, 1‑800‑MEDICARE, or your local State Health Insurance Program to get information on all of your options.