Get A Plan From One of The Best Rated Medicare Supplement Companies Through EZ

There are a lot of choices when it comes to Medicare Supplement Plans. You not only have the choice between 10 different letter plans, but you also have the choice of multiple companies to buy your plan from. There’s Aetna, Cigna, Humana, Mutual of Omaha, and so many more. But which one in this sea of companies should you go for? First you need to determine which companies service your area. Next, you need to check each company’s ratings. At EZ, we have agents who can find the company that best fits your needs, so you can get the best possible plan and service. 

How Companies Are Rated

yellow trophy with a star in the middle of the cup part.
Organizations like the Better Business Bureau will sometimes evaluate multiple companies and give awards based on certain factors. 

Ratings for insurance companies that offer Medicare Supplement Plans are not based on the coverage that their plans offer. This is because Medicare Supplement Plans are standardized by Medicare, so each insurance company has to offer the same benefits for each letter plan across the board. Insurance companies can, however, set the premiums for their plans, so those vary from one company to another. Ratings aren’t generally determined by price alone, though. Insurance company ratings are based on: 

  • The variety of plans offered. Many companies only offer a limited number of policies out of the 10 different letter plan types. 
  • Their customer service. This is determined by customer reviews.
  • Awards received. Organizations like the Better Business Bureau will sometimes evaluate multiple companies and give awards based on certain factors. 
  • How many states they offer plans in. Some companies only offer plans in a handful of states, while others serve more areas.

The Top Rated Companies

After evaluating all of the criteria above, we have determined that the top 5 Medicare Supplement insurance companies are:

  1. Humana– Covers all 50 states, offers plans A,B,C,K,L,N, and has the best additional member benefits. This company generally uses attained-age pricing, meaning premiums increase as you age, and premiums depend on your location, age, tobacco use, and gender. They offer small discounts to those who are living with another senior member who has one of their Medicare Supplement Plans.
  2. Aetna- Covers 42 states, offers plans A,B,G,N, and is rated best for customer service. Aetna generally uses attained-age pricing, so premiums increase as customers age. They  also offer a 12-month rate lock, which guarantees that your premiums will not go up in the first year. They offer a 12% discount for customers who live with another senior who has one of their Medicare Supplement Plans. 
  3. Cigna– Covers 50 states, offers plans A,B,C,D,G,N, and has been rated the best overall value for the plans they offer. They do not require customers to use an in-network doctor, and they offer competitive premiums and some of the most affordable options. They offer a 7% discount for customers living with one other person that is enrolled in one of their Medicare Supplement Plans. map of the US with the states in different colors

  4. AARP– Covers 50 states, offers plans A,B,C,G,K,L,N, and is rated the most experienced in working with seniors. To qualify for a plan, you must be an AARP member. Their plan prices are community-rated. They offer an enrollment discount in most states of up to 30% for seniors aged 65, and they offer a 5% discount when more than one person in the household is enrolled in one of their plans.
  5. Mutual of Omaha– Covers 50 states, offers plans A,G,N, and is rated the most experienced in working with the Medicare system; they have been offering Medicare Supplement Plans since 1966. Their plans usually use attained-age pricing, so premiums increase as customers age. They offer a 12% discount if you live with one other person (over 60 years old) that is also covered by one of their plans. 

If you are interested in getting a plan from a top-rated Medicare Supplement company, EZ can help. We work with all of these companies, and more, and we will provide you with a highly trained licensed agent who works with these companies. Your agent will compare all available Medicare Supplement Plans to find the best one for you. You deserve the best, so we’ll make sure you get the best. To get free Medicare Supplement Plan quotes, enter your zip code in the bar above, or if you prefer to speak to an agent directly, call 888-753-7207. Our agents are ready to help!

More ACA Insurance Options In 2020

2020 will bring more health insurance options for people in counties that have previously had few choices. This fall open enrollment period, people shopping in the ACA Marketplace will find about 60% of insurers adding more plans. This is great news for people who have had limited options, especially those who only had plans from a single insurance company available to them. What’s even better is that 46% of insurers say they plan to either lower their premium rates or keep them the same as last year. 

the less than symbol in a black circle.
Many insurers abandoned certain areas of the country leaving people with less options.

The Fleeing Insurers

Prior to 2018, many health insurance companies were choosing not to participate in the federal health insurance marketplace, leaving people with few options. Many abandoned certain areas of the country because it was costing them too much to cover the poorer, sicker people who were able to get healthcare plans under the rules of the ACA. Because there was so much more demand than supply, premiums were constantly rising, making it harder for people to get insurance even when they could find a plan in their area.

Resurgence Of Insurers

After seven years of instability and decreasing involvement, some insurers began slowly re-entering the Marketplace in 2018. Oscar Health was one of the first to increase the plans they were offering in the Marketplace for 2019. Following Oscar Health was Bright Health, who expanded on venture-funded Medicare Advantage plans. Cigna joined them soon after. 

“Stability has not been a major theme in the story of the Affordable Care Act marketplace, but since 2018, premium growth has slowed and issuer participation has increased,” RWJF summarized in a statement. “While enrollment has trended down somewhat in recent years, health plans seem newly interested in participating.”

The ExpansionUnited States Map

Centene, Oscar, and Bright Health will be expanding into counties where they weren’t  previously offering plans. Blue plans, Cigna, and Anthem are also choosing to expand into new areas. 

Oscar will expand to cover individuals and families in six new states and a total of 12 new markets. For its individual markets, Oscar will be expanding into Florida, offering plans in Miami, Tampa, Ocala and Daytona. Oscar will also offer plans for the first time in Philadelphia, Denver, Richmond, Atlanta, and the Kansas City metropolitan area across Missouri and Kansas. In Texas, Oscar will begin with Houston and expand the plan options currently offered in Dallas-Fort Worth. Oscar will also expand to serve several counties in Western Michigan.

Bright Health will double their expansion of Medicare Advantage plans into 13 new markets across six states. The states include Florida, Illinois, Nebraska, Ohio, South Carolina, and Tennessee. Last year, Bright Health grew to include products in Arizona, New York, Ohio, and Tennessee.

Centene plans on expanding into ten markets, including Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, North Carolina, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Washington.

Cigna announced they will be expanding in the federal health insurance marketplace, specifically 19 new markets (counties) in 10 states: Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, Missouri, North Carolina, Tennessee, Utah and Virginia.They are offering $0 preventive care, free telehealth services, and low-cost options for chronic disease management. This is a pretty big deal for people that couldn’t receive this kind of care or could not afford it. 

“More people who purchase health care coverage on the exchange now will have access to Cigna’s broad range of products and services that makes quality health care more accessible and affordable,” said Brian Evanko, president of Cigna’s government business. “We’ve learned from our thoughtful approach and continuous presence on the exchange how to deliver a great product with a simplified customer experience. We are proud to be able to deliver our exceptional offering to even more people throughout the U.S.”

If you would like to learn more about the new insurers in your area and what plans they are offering, EZ will help guide you through the process. We will provide you with a personal agent that will go over all the information, and compare plans so you can find a plan that meets your financial and healthcare needs for free. To see prices and shop for plans, enter your zip code in the bar above, or speak with an agent directly by calling 888-350-1890.

Insurance Providers Cigna, Aetna & Humana Waive Patients’ Share of COVID-19 Treatment Costs

Protecting Americans and their health is a high priority, especially now during the COVID-19 pandemic. In order to help keep Americans safe, major health insurance providers are waiving copayments and cost-sharing for patients with the coronavirus. These companies (and all other insurance providers) will also not require copays for coronavirus testing thanks to the $2 trillion CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Safety) Act passed last week. 

woman sitting in a hospital bed with an IV machine connected
Aetna is going to waive costs, but only for hospital admissions related to the coronavirus.

The medical bills that follow treatment for the virus can be astronomical, which is why these providers are stepping in. Cigna and Humana have dedicated themselves to providing the care these patients need without worrying about the cost. CVS Health announced that Aetna is going to waive costs, but only for hospital admissions related to the coronavirus.

The Waived Cost-Sharing Fees

These three insurers have decided to waive cost-sharing associated with COVID-19 treatments, which means a patient will not have to pay their full deductible before insurance takes over. This includes coinsurance as well as copayments. In other words, patients will not have to worry about paying out-of-pocket while getting treated for the coronavirus. These insurers are doing this to allow  people to seek treatment without fear of large medical bills, which may deter some from seeking treatment. This is especially true for the millions of Americans that lost their jobs and cannot afford these kinds of costs.

As of right now, Aetna and Cigna are waiving fees for qualified medical bills through June 1, 2020. Humana has not yet set an ending date for this arrangement.

These insurers have also waived telehealth service fees related to the virus.

Some Will Pay

person's hand holsing a pencil pointing at a bill with a caluculator to the right

Unfortunately, only some people will benefit from these arrangements. If a person is not insured by one of these three companies (or is not insured at all), then they may have to pay for services related to the coronavirus. 

In addition, Larry Levitt, executive vice president for health policy at the Kaiser Family Foundation, notes that even some people who are covered by these insurance companies might not be eligible to have their costs waived. “Most of the people who get insurance through employers are in what are called self-funded plans,” he explains. For people in those plans, these announcements don’t apply, since “it’s the employers who are going to be deciding whether patients get cost relief here or not.”

It is also important to note that if a person receives care outside of their health insurance network, they will be billed directly by the hospitals or doctors. The services may end up being covered, but these surprise bills are something to be aware of. 

In this time of crisis, it is important for Americans to have access to the testing for and treatment of this virus. It is the only way to get a handle on the situation, and hopefully slow the progression of the disease.

Cigna Links Up With Upstart Oscar For Small Business Health Insurance

Cigna, and small startup insurance company Oscar are teaming to begin offering small business health insurance options that are fully insured. The plans will be branded as Cigna + Oscar, and both companies will share risk equally. The plans are set to begin selling in 2020.

chains connected together by one red link
Cigna and Oscar Health link up to provide better small business health insurance plans.

Oscar’s Start-up

New York based Oscar Health started out small in 2012, and has slowly expanded to different states. They offer individual market plans, and expanded to offering small group and Medicare Advantage plans. Just this past August, the company has expanded to 6 new states in the US, and grew to 400,000 members this year. 

Unfortunately, Oscar does not provide vision or dental insurance. However, the company is hoping that partnering with Cigna will change this.

empty dentist patient room
Small business health insurance does not generally cover dental and vision. Hopeful the merge provides these benefits.

“Small businesses are the backbone of the American economy and through this partnership, we can take a disciplined approach to offering differentiated healthcare solutions that help small businesses save money, expand network and product choice and keep employees healthy,” Julie McCarter, vice president of product solutions at Cigna, said in a statement.

How Small Businesses Can Save

Small businesses do not necessarily have to offer health insurance to their employees. It can become too expensive for the business. However, with this new merge, this will open the door to small businesses being able to afford healthcare coverage for their employees. 

silhouette of a group of people with a huge red heart behind them in the background.
“Together, we are giving small business owners an affordable, simple-to-use option.”

“Together, we are giving small business owners an affordable, simple-to-use option that makes it easier for their employees to get appropriate care quickly and stay healthy,” Oscar Chief Policy and Strategy Officer Joel Klein said in a news release. “Cigna + Oscar will give these business owners and their employees consumer-centric health care coverage and physician networks that provide personalized care.”

The plans will include medical, behavioral health, and pharmacy services. Telemedicine will also be provided at no cost 24/7. This will help employees with the ability to call and speak with a doctor. They will also get their medicine quicker than going into the doctor’s office.

Although Cigna is not one of the largest 3 insurers in the small group market, they do offer group insurance to employers with 50 or more employees. The company is hoping tha partnering up with Oscar will help the company grow more and bring in more revenue. Together, the companies can do more in smaller markets than they would have been able to do alone. Let’s hope the future is bright for small businesses, and more importantly their employees receiving health insurance!