Health Insurance Company Reviews
Choosing a health insurance company is one of the most important financial decisions you can make. With rising healthcare costs, selecting the right health insurance provider can save you thousands of dollars per year. But with so many options to choose from, how do you know which company is the best fit for your needs and budget? This comprehensive guide reviews the top health insurance companies to help you make an informed decision.
What to Consider When Choosing a Health Insurance Company
When comparing health insurance providers, there are several key factors to take into account:
- Do they offer the types of plans you need (HMO, PPO, etc)?
- What benefits are covered (doctor visits, prescriptions, dental, vision, etc)?
- Are pre-existing conditions covered?
- What are the monthly premiums?
- Are there deductibles and co-pays? If so, how much are they?
- What is the out-of-pocket maximum per year?
- Does your doctor accept the insurance? What hospitals are in-network?
- Is the provider network sufficiently large for your location?
- Are they known for good customer service and claims processing?
- Do they offer online tools and resources?
- How responsive are they via phone, email, live chat?
By comparing these key factors across insurance providers, you can determine the best value for your healthcare needs.
Reviews of Top 9 Health Insurance Companies
Here are in-depth reviews of the 9 best health insurance providers in the US based on plan options, affordability, network coverage, and customer satisfaction.
UnitedHealthcare (UHC) is one of the largest and most popular health insurance companies in the US.
Plans offered: UHC offers a wide variety of plan types including HMO, PPO, POS, EPO, and high-deductible health plans. They also provide dental, vision, and life insurance policies.
Cost: Premiums and out-of-pocket costs are moderately priced. Deductibles range from $500 to $5000 depending on the plan.
Provider network: With over 1.2 million physicians and 6,000 hospitals, UHC has one of the largest provider networks in the nation. They offer national and regional network plans.
Customer service: UHC consistently ranks well for customer service satisfaction and claims processing accuracy. They provide online tools to estimate costs and find providers.
Overall: With its broad coverage, large provider network, and good customer service, UnitedHealthcare is a solid choice for health insurance.
2. Blue Cross Blue Shield
Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) is a household name in health insurance covering over 106 million members.
Plans offered: BCBS companies offer all types of medical plans as well as dental, vision, life and disability insurance. Plan options vary by state.
Cost: As a non-profit provider, premiums from BCBS tend to be more affordable than for-profit insurers. Deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums are usually on the lower end as well.
Provider network: The BCBS provider network includes over 95% of hospitals and 80% of doctors nationwide. Availability is excellent across all states.
Customer service: BCBS companies perform consistently well in customer service reviews thanks to their smooth claims processing and easy-to-use online tools.
Overall: With strong nationwide coverage, lower costs, and excellent customer satisfaction, BCBS is a leading health insurance carrier.
As one of the biggest national carriers, Aetna provides comprehensive health benefits and insurance solutions.
Plans offered: Aetna offers all standard health plan types plus student plans, international plans and Medicare Advantage plans. They also provide vision, dental, pharmacy, behavioral health, disability and life insurance.
Cost: Premiums and deductibles are moderately priced. Aetna offers competitive rates by bundling plans.
Provider network: With over 1.2 million providers, Aetna has national provider coverage with a strong presence on the East Coast.
Customer service: Aetna receives positive reviews for helpful customer service and fast claims processing. Members have access to cost estimators and other online resources.
Overall: For extensive coverage options, affordable rates and good service, Aetna is a leading health insurance choice.
Cigna provides health and supplemental insurance to over 17 million members nationwide.
Plans offered: Plan options include HMO, PPO, POS, EPO, and high-deductible plans. They also offer dental, vision, disability, accident, critical illness, and life insurance policies.
Cost: Premiums are competitively priced with the national average. Out-of-pocket costs are on the higher side but in-network costs are affordable.
Provider network: Cigna has a large national network with over 1.5 million healthcare providers and facilities. Coverage is strong across metropolitan areas.
Customer service: Cigna is rated highly for customer service satisfaction. They provide thorough online resources for estimates and finding doctors.
Overall: Cigna is a top choice for full health coverage with competitive pricing and excellent service.
Humana is known for affordable Medicare plans and has an expanding presence in individual and family health insurance.
Plans offered: In addition to individual medical plans, Humana offers Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement, dental, vision, life, and disability insurance.
Cost: Thanks to their focus on keeping administrative costs low, Humana provides some of the lowest premiums in the health insurance market. Maximum out-of-pocket expenses are also low.
Provider network: Although not as large as some competitors, Humana's provider network still includes over 1 million medical providers. They have a strong presence across the South and Midwest.
Customer service: Humana ranks highly for customer satisfaction thanks to personalized service and fast claims processing. Their website provides helpful tools and information.
Overall: For competitively priced plans and excellent customer service, Humana is a great option for health insurance.
6. Kaiser Permanente
Kaiser Permanente combines insurance plans with a network of doctors and hospitals to provide comprehensive care.
Plans offered: Kaiser provides integrated HMO plans alongside dental, vision and life insurance. Their focus is affordable, preventive care.
Cost: Premiums are competitively priced and deductibles are low, but out-of-network care is not covered outside of emergencies.
Provider network: The Kaiser network includes more than 18,000 physicians, 38 hospitals, and over 700 medical offices, concentrated in the Northwest, California, Colorado, Georgia, Hawaii, Mid-Atlantic, and Washington D.C.
Customer service: Kaiser is consistently rated highly for member satisfaction thanks to integrated care and low out-of-pocket costs. Care is conveniently accessible through their app and online tools.
Overall: Kaiser Permanente is a top choice for HMO plans with low deductibles and out-of-pocket costs in their coverage regions.
7. Anthem Blue Cross
Anthem Blue Cross provides health insurance to Californians as well as customers nationwide through the Blue Cross Blue Shield association.
Plans offered: Anthem offers HMO, EPO, PPO, POS, FSA, HRA, and HSA-compatible high deductible health plans. They also provide dental, vision, life, disability and other supplemental insurance.
Cost: Premiums and deductibles are moderately priced, averaging nationwide rates. Members can reduce costs when using in-network providers.
Provider network: In California, Anthem has the largest PPO network and a strong HMO network including thousands of doctors and over 100 hospitals. They have a large national network through BCBS as well.
Customer service: Anthem makes it easy for members to manage their plans and claims online. Customer service response times can be slow however.
Overall: For Californians and anyone seeking BCBS plans, Anthem offers broad provider networks and comprehensive coverage.
8. Oscar Health
Oscar provides technology-focused, affordable health insurance aimed at millennials.
Plans offered: Oscar sells ACA-compliant individual and family health insurance online in 15 states. Plans include HMO, EPO, PPO options.
Cost: Premiums are competitively priced for individuals. Out-of-pocket costs can be high if using out-of-network providers or needing specialist care.
Provider network: Oscar's provider networks are small compared to larger insurance companies. Their network strength varies significantly by location.
Customer service: Oscar focuses on a streamlined member experience through their intuitive app. However, some customers report long waits when contacting customer service.
Overall: Oscar offers affordable rates to those who value an easy online and mobile experience. Provider network coverage is smaller than other options.
9. Molina Healthcare
Molina provides low-cost Medicaid, Medicare, and ACA marketplace health plans across the U.S.
Plans offered: In addition to individual and family medical insurance, Molina offers Medicare Advantage and Medicaid managed care plans in 18 states.
Cost: Premiums are among the lowest in the marketplace. Deductibles and copays are also inexpensive. Plans cover most preventive services at no charge.
Provider network: Molina's provider network is small compared to other national carriers but includes over 33,000 providers concentrated in its coverage areas.
Customer service: Response times for customer service can be slow. However, members generally report good experiences once connected to a representative.
Overall: Molina delivers extremely affordable coverage for low-income individuals who qualify for government-subsidized marketplace or Medicaid plans. Provider networks are limited.
Choosing the Best Health Insurance Company: Key Takeaways
Compare coverage options, costs, provider networks, and customer service ratings when evaluating health insurance companies.
National carriers like UnitedHealthcare, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Aetna, and Cigna offer comprehensive benefits with large provider networks.
Regional non-profits like Kaiser Permanente provide affordable integrated HMO plans with high customer satisfaction.
Government-subsidized insurers like Molina offer the lowest premiums to qualified applicants.
Consider your anticipated healthcare needs and budget when choosing a plan and carrier. Having the right coverage in place is critical for protecting your finances.
Frequently Asked Questions About Health Insurance Companies
What is the best health insurance company?
There is no one overall “best” health insurance company. The right carrier for you depends on where you live, your budget, healthcare needs, doctor preferences, and other personal factors. National carriers like UnitedHealthcare, Aetna, and Humana are top choices for their comprehensive coverage, large networks, and customer service.
Which health insurance has the best coverage?
For comprehensive coverage on a national level, UnitedHealthcare and Blue Cross Blue Shield have some of the largest provider networks with varied plan options. Cigna and Aetna also have broad coverage. For regional HMO plans, Kaiser Permanente is highly rated.
Which health insurance is the cheapest?
Molina and Ambetter offer the most affordable health insurance for low-income individuals who qualify for government subsidies on the ACA marketplace. Medicaid programs administered by Molina, Wellcare, Centene, and Amerigroup also provide very low-cost coverage.
What should you look for when choosing health insurance?
When selecting health insurance, consider the monthly premium, deductibles and copays, covered medical services, prescription benefits, size of the provider network, customer service reputation, online resources, and additional benefits like dental or vision. Choose a plan that fits your budget and coverage needs.
How do I pick a health insurance plan?
Start by making a list of providers you want to have access to, medications you take, and healthcare services you anticipate needing in the next year. Compare plans offered in your location by looking at out-of-pocket costs, copays, and deductibles for those items. Also consider the monthly premium cost. Pick a plan that covers your essential needs at the lowest total cost.
The Bottom Line
Choosing the right health insurance company is critical to getting coverage that protects your health and your wallet. By understanding plan options, costs, provider networks, and customer service reputations, you can select the carrier and policy that best fits your needs and budget. Take your time to comparison shop so you can feel confident your healthcare costs are covered.