Choosing a health insurance company and plan can be complicated, and very time consuming. Companies and the plans they offer vary state by state. When it is time to start researching companies and plans, there are two things you should focus on; coverage levels and your budget. So, is there really one health insurance company that we would call the best?
Plan & Network Types
When you are in the market for health insurance, you will come across two popular terms: PPO and HMO. Health Maintenance Organization(HMO) and Preferred Provider Organization(PPO). These are two of the most popular types of major medical health insurance plans.
An HMO plan will only pay for services within the HMO network, except for emergency care. Emergency care will be covered out-of-network in certain instances. HMO plans are generally less expensive than PPO plans, with lower monthly premiums.
PPO plans offer more flexibility when picking your doctor and hospital. The care provided from these plans is more affordable if you stay in-network. Unlike HMOs, you are not limited to the providers who are in-network. You can see providers who are out-of-network, but it will cost you higher than in-network providers. PPO plans are more expensive mostly due to their high monthly premium payments. However, the increased flexibility more than makes up for the higher prices. You do not need to maintain a PCP, and can see any doctor, including specialists any time without a referral.
The Metal Categories
There are 4 different categories of health insurance plans to choose from:
- Silver plans pay for about 70 percent of customers’ health costs, with the remainder of payment left for the customer. These plans are purchased by nearly 80 percent of customers.
- Bronze plans, the second most popular plan, covers 60 percent of customers’ health costs. These plans are purchased by about 23 percent of customers.
- Gold plans are usually the priciest, covering 80 percent of customers’ health costs. These plans are purchased by about 3 percent of customers.
- Platinum plans are the most expensive plans, covering 90 percent of customers’ health costs. These plans are purchased by less than 1 percent of customers.
Monthly Premiums & Deductibles
A premium is the fixed monthly rate that you pay for the insurance company to cover you and your family. A deductible is a fixed amount you must pay before the insurance company begins covering you. You are responsible for paying the bills that you accumulate before your insurance coverage kicks in.
Deductibles and premiums work together in a way. A plan with a low deductible will have higher premiums. You can choose to pay high premiums with a low deductible, or low monthly premiums with a high deductible. You should base your decision on how healthy you are because the healthier you are, the less likely you are to go to the doctor or have to pay your deductible. If you are someone with a pre-existing condition and need to see the doctor often, then a higher premium with a low deductible would be a better fit.
The Best Companies
So time to answer the question if there is one health insurance company that we would call the best. There is not ONE specific health insurance company that is the best, but based on some research, these companies were rated the best:
- Blue Cross/Blue Shield: Best for Nationwide Coverage
- Cigna Health Insurance: Best for Global Coverage
- Humana: Best Wrap-around Coverage
- Kaiser Foundation Health Plans: Best for HMOs
- United Healthcare Services Inc.
Many different aspects go into considering which company and health plan to choose. If you need help comparing companies, their plans, and figuring out which one best suits your needs and budget, EZ.Insure can help. We offer you a personalized licensed agent within your area that will go over all the plans within your area. They will provide you with quotes on all the plans, what they cover, and sign you up, for free. Our services are completely free! To get instant quotes, simply enter your zip code in the bar above, or contact an agent by calling 888-350-1890, or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.