Medicare Eligibility

Medicare is a health insurance program for:

  • People 65 years of age and older.
  • The disabled—those under age 65 who have received Social Security or Railroad Retiree disability benefits for 24 consecutive months. Click the link below to download our factsheet, or call SHIIP at 1-800-351-4664 (TTY 1-800-735-2942) to request that it be sent to you.
  • Those with a diagnosis of ALS or Lou Gehrig’s Disease.
  • People with end-stage renal disease (permanent kidney failure treated with dialysis or a transplant).

To be eligible for Medicare, a person must be a US citizen and resident of the U.S. or an alien living in the U.S. for five years who has been lawfully admitted for permanent residence.

Enrolling in Medicare

For those approaching Medicare eligibility, it's important to know the different types of medical coverage available to you. We've created an easy-to-understand checklist to help you decide what type of Medicare you want to receive. Plus, additional resources for those with limited income to help with Medicare drug costs and premiums or co-pays.  Review our Checklist for People Approaching Medicare Eligibility to decide:

  • When you should enroll in Medicare Part A and Part B.
  • How you want to get your Medicare Coverage.
  • If you are eligibly for programs to help cover costs.

Common Questions about Enrollment Timing