Medicare eligibility


Q. My husband is retired Postal Service, with Blue Cross/Blue Shield and Medicare Part A.

I will be 65 in March but only have 37 credits and do not qualify for Social Security or Medicare, according to my SS statement.

I would like to know if I qualify for Part A under my husband’s Medicare benefits and, if so, what will happen to that benefit if he dies before I do? Due to medical issues, I do not plan to work in to get those last three credits.

A. Generally, you are eligible for Medicare at age 65 if your spouse worked for at least 10 years in Medicare-covered employment, which he must have because he’s already covered by Part A. To be sure that you qualify, call the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213 and talk to one of their benefits specialists.


About Author

Reg Jones was head of retirement and insurance policy at the Office of Personnel Management. Email your retirement-related questions to

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