Summed Up: Your Medicare Summary Notice
How your MSN makes sense of the services you’ve received
Reviewed by: Michael Howard, Licensed Insurance Agent. Written by: Aaron Garcia.
A Medicare Summary Notice (MSN) is not a bill.
MSNs detail the claims and charges applied to your Original MedicareOriginal Medicare (Parts A and B) is fee-for-service health insurance available to all Americans aged 65 and older and some individuals with disabilities. Original Medicare is provided by the federal government and is made up of two parts: Part A (hospital insurance) and Part B (medical insurance). account.
Each MSN includes instructions to file an appeal if one of your claims is denied.
MSNs are mailed every three months if you’ve received any Medicare-covered services.
Keeping up with your claims and payments when you’re enrolled in Original Medicare (Parts A and B) can be daunting. To help, Medicare provides statements known as Medicare Summary Notices (MSN) to help you stay on top of your account. If you or a loved one are trying to make sense of your MSN, here’s an easy-to-follow guide.
Medicare Summary Notices are detailed statements mailed by Medicare every three months. Your MSN will include your account’s claims, the doctors you visited, how much was paid, and more.
An MSN is not a bill. Think of your MSNs as Medicare statements. As with your bank statements, you can use an MSN to verify that your account’s activity matches the services you received.
Only those enrolled in Original Medicare (Parts A and B) will receive an MSN. If you’re enrolled in Original Medicare and receive any Part A- or Part B-eligible services or equipment, Medicare will send you an MSN. 
Your Medicare Summary Notice is easy to read and understand. Your MSN doesn’t just have the info you need; Medicare also includes helpful explanations and definitions to guide you.
Each MSN is split into four sections: 
The dashboard gives you a brief rundown of your account over the previous three months. You’ll find:
- Your personal information
- Deductible status
- Overview of your claims and costs
- All healthcare providers you’ve visited
Making the Most of Your Medicare
If you need help with reading your MSN, want to report fraud or are looking for more Medicare info, this section provides:
- Instructions on how to check the MSN
- Medicare contact info
- Medicare-related messages
Your claims detail specific MSN items you’re looking at. For example, your Part B MSN will only include your Part B claims. Section three includes:
- A list of your claims
- Claim status
- Amounts charged and owed
- Definitions of the info shown
How to Handle Denied Claims or File an Appeal
Your Medicare Summary Notice’s final page explains what to do if you think a claim was denied incorrectly. Your MSN will include:
- Instructions for filing an appeal
- Your appeal deadline
- Contact info for Medicare
No — MSNs are only for those enrolled in Original Medicare. While an Explanation of Benefits (EOB) typically includes much of the same information, they’re only sent to Medicare Advantage and Medicare Prescription Drug Plan (Part D) enrollees.
Private health insurance companies provide Medicare Advantage and Part D plans, and each company creates its own EOB to send to its customers. That means an EOB from one company can look very different from another company’s EOB. MSNs, however, are all formatted the same way.
How can I get another copy of my MSN?
If you need another copy of your MSN, contact Medicare by calling 1-800-MEDICARE. You can also receive your Medicare Summary Notices electronically by signing into your Medicare.gov account. 
Does my EOB show specific prescription info?
Your MSN won’t display any prescription drug info. If you’re enrolled in a Part D plan, you’ll probably get an Explanation of Benefits from the company you purchased your policy from. Part D EOBs often do display your prescription drug info, including specific medications you’re taking.