How First Coast Service Options got its start: America has long been committed to providing medical coverage for the elderly and disabled. President Harry S. Truman first introduced the idea of a government sponsored prepaid health insurance plan in 1945. Twenty years later, his idea became reality with passage of the Medicare legislation. Approximately 19 million elderly, virtually all those who were eligible, elected to become beneficiaries after President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Medicare legislation on July 30, 1965. President Truman and his wife Bess were, appropriately, on hand to receive the first two Medicare cards. Since that day when Harry and Bess received their cards, the Medicare program has grown significantly, now serving nearly millions of beneficiaries nationwide, including people with disabilities, and issues benefit payments totaling nearly $300 billion annually – approximately 17 percent of the nation’s health care spending.
First Coast Service Options, Inc. (First Coast), headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla., has been administering the Medicare program since its inception in 1966. First Coast got its start as the Government Business division of its parent company. In 1999, First Coast began operations as a wholly owned subsidiary of its parent company and continued administering the Medicare contract under a special power of attorney until 2003. In 2003, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services - the federal agency that oversees the Medicare program - formally recognized the transfer of the Medicare contracts to First Coast.