Best Health Insurance Providers In 2022

Learn about top health insurance providers and find the best deals with our latest guide.
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ProviderRatingBest for
Blue Cross Blue Shield Health
5
HMO
Kaiser Permanente Health
4.5
Specialty Coverage
Aetna Health
5
Customer Satisfaction
UnitedHealthcare Health
3.8
Specialty Coverage
Cigna Health
5
PPO

It’s no secret that health insurance costs are rising. But what can you do to ensure you're getting the best deal on coverage? 

It's more important than ever to ensure you have the right health care plan, especially with so many changes in the health care industry. 

Whether you're looking for an affordable plan that covers your basic needs or you're interested in a more comprehensive coverage option, our guide can help.

Check out our top picks for health insurance providers in 2022 and find out everything you need to know about choosing a health insurance plan.

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What Is Health Insurance?

Health insurance is a type of insurance that covers the cost of doctors’ visits, hospitalization, prescription drugs, and preventive care. It may also cover the cost of long-term care, such as nursing home care. 

You can buy health insurance directly from an insurance company or an employer-sponsored group insurance plan. Some people may also be eligible for government-sponsored programs such as Medicare or Medicaid.

Most insurance companies offer a variety of plans that cover different types and levels of care. Some plans also have limitations on which providers you can see or how much you will have to pay out-of-pocket for services.

Best for HMO Plans

Pros

  • Decades of health insurance experience.

  • One of the largest networks of approved providers and facilities.

  • Available in most states.

  • Strong financial backing.

  • Offer members exclusive discounts through partnerships with various providers.

Cons

  • Customer service will vary depending on your location.

  • Plans and benefits will also depend on your state.

Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) is a nationwide health insurance association that offers individual health plans, Medicare cover, and supplemental health insurance. 

The association is made up of 35 different regional companies that work under the BCBS name. This means that they have a wide network of health care providers and nationwide coverage for their members.

Because BCBS is made up of independent companies, the quality of service and care offered may vary from region to region. That being said, some BCBS companies score exceptionally high in terms of customer satisfaction and service quality.

Read our full review to learn more about BCBS and its health insurance products.

What Should I Consider When Choosing Health Insurance?

Many people find health insurance confusing and challenging to understand. However, it is an important part of maintaining your health and well-being. When choosing health insurance, there are several things you should keep in mind.

1) Make sure that the insurance covers what you need. There is no point in paying for health insurance that does not cover the level of care you need.

2) Consider the costs of the plan you’re interested in. You don't want to pay more than you can afford, but you also don't want to skimp on coverage.

3) Think about what other expenses you might have related to your health care. For example, if you have a preexisting condition, you may have to pay more for your insurance.

Best for Customer Satisfaction

AM Best Rating
A
Customer Service Rating
4
Excluded States
Exceptions in: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming

Pros

  • Offers online quotes and applications for coverage. 

  • Scores well for customer satisfaction and claims handling.

  • A large network of medical specialists.

  • Offers comprehensive preventive services and care.

  • Market-leading customer service and coverage.

Cons

  • It only operates in eight states and Washington DC.

  • Members are limited to in-network providers for general medical care.

Kaiser Permanente is considered to be one of the best-rated health insurance companies in the U.S. 

While they only operate in eight states and Washington DC, their members consistently report high levels of service and overall customer satisfaction. 

Part of the reason why Kaiser Permanente is rated well by its members is because of the extensive benefits and coverage they provide. 

Their wide network of providers and medical specialists, and fast claims handling, have consistently remained excellent since they first started to offer health insurance in 1945.

If you live in a covered state, getting health insurance through Kaiser Permanente is a smart decision. 

Want to find out more? Learn about Kaiser Permanente’s products and services with our latest guide.

Health Insurance Options for Seniors

When it comes to health insurance, seniors have a few different options.

  • Traditional health insurance is an option for seniors who are still working, or who have retired and are covered by their former employer.

  • Another option is Medicare, a federal insurance program for people 65 years or older, or those with specific conditions.

  • Finally, there is Medicaid, a state and federal insurance program for low-income individuals of any age. 

If you’re a senior citizen, comparing the coverage and costs of each type of insurance is essential before deciding which one to enroll in.

The Different Types of Health Insurance

There are various health insurance coverage types available to individuals and families. The type of insurance you choose will affect your costs and benefits. The most common types of insurance are employer-sponsored, individual, and government-sponsored.

Health Maintenance Organizations, or HMOs, are health insurance plans requiring policyholders to use a specific network of doctors and hospitals, and they often have higher deductibles and co-pays than other insurance policies.

Preferred Provider Organizations, or PPOs, offer members greater flexibility in choosing health care providers. With a PPO plan, you can choose any doctor or hospital you wish without needing prior approval from the insurance company. 

Exclusive Provider Organizations, or EPOs, offer members reduced costs and coverage for medical expenses. EPOs typically have a network of providers that members can use for their health care needs.

Point-Of-Service Plans, or POS plans, have lower monthly premiums than other insurance plans, but they also typically have higher deductibles and out-of-pocket costs. Policyholders with POS plans must pay for their medical care up front and then submit a claim to their insurance company for reimbursement.

Best for PPO Plans

AM Best Rating
A
Customer Service Rating
5

Pros

  • Strong financial backing and ratings.

  • 24/7 customer service.

  • Most plans don’t require out-of-network approvals.

  • Large network of providers and health care facilities. 

  • Added extras such as telehealth services, pharmacy home delivery, and rewards programs. 

  • An easy-to-use website and mobile application.

Cons

  • Doesn’t offer plans in every state.

  • You may experience customer service problems.

Cigna offers health insurance and supplemental life cover in 15 states. Besides its generous insurance terms, the company offers members additional benefits and perks to improve their health and quality of life.

Members can manage their health insurance through Cigna’s website and mobile application, and make use of the company’s 24/7 customer service. Cigna is considered to be financially sound, scoring an “A” in the annual A.M. Best Financial Strength Rating. Some of the health insurance products offered include individual plans, Medicare Advantage, dental and vision cover, and pharmacy programs. 

If you’d like to learn more about Cigna’s products and services, read our latest review.

Is My Health Coverage Enough?

Everyone's individual needs are different, and what may be enough for one person may not be enough for another. However, with health insurance, it's crucial to ensure you have enough coverage. 

Otherwise, you may find yourself responsible for a lot of out-of-pocket costs. That being said, you don't want to overspend on insurance either. So how can you tell if your coverage is enough?

Start by taking a look at your insurance plan. What does it cover? Are there any coverage gaps that could expose you to unexpected costs? If so, you should consider increasing your insurance with a supplemental policy.

Next, consider your needs. Do you have any preexisting conditions that would require extra coverage? Do you have a family history of illnesses that could be expensive to treat?

Finally, think about your budget. How much can you afford to spend on insurance premiums each month? Once you've answered these questions, you'll better understand how much health insurance coverage you need.

What Won’t My Health Insurance Cover?

Many people are surprised to learn that their health insurance doesn't cover everything. While insurance can help with some medical care costs, out-of-pocket expenses often need to be covered. 

These can include things like deductibles, co-payments, and coinsurance.

Additionally, there are some services that insurance companies simply don't cover, such as cosmetic surgery or elective procedures.

It's essential to be aware of what your insurance does and doesn't cover to budget for potential expenses. Contact one of our agents if you have any questions about your coverage.

Best for Network Size

AM Best Rating
A-
Customer Service Rating
3.2

Pros

  • The largest network of doctors and health care professionals.

  • Offers added extras like virtual checkups and telehealth services. 

  • A range of health insurance plans to suit anyone.

  • Quality customer service.

  • Mobile app to manage your health care needs. 

Cons

  • Plans aren’t available in all states.

  • Prices for certain plans may be higher than competitors.

UnitedHealthcare is one of the largest health insurance providers in the country, with the largest overall number of policyholders. 

Members have access to 1.3 million doctors and health care professionals, a range of virtual services, and preventative care benefits.

While you may pay more on average for coverage through UnitedHealthcare, its plans include a range of benefits and extras that you wouldn’t typically get through other providers. 

The company also has an extensive list of coverage options, including individual, short-term, and Medicare plans, so that people can find the right insurance for them. 

Learn more about UnitedHealthcare by reading our full review.

What Can I Do to Lower My Health Insurance Costs?

You can do a few things to lower your health insurance costs.

Some insurance plans base their premiums on the amount of coverage you desire. You can typically pay lower monthly premiums by opting for a high deductible plan with less coverage. If you are financially comfortable enough to take on more risk, this may be a good option.

Another way to lower your health insurance costs is by staying healthy and making use of preventive care options. Many insurance companies offer wellness programs and benefits that encourage healthy living. In addition, some plans may cover the cost of preventive screenings and vaccinations.

It’s also crucial to compare rates and shop for the best health insurance deal. Rates can vary significantly from one insurer to the next, so it pays to do your research. Consider the premium cost and the plan's features when shopping for health insurance.

Finally, stay on top of current government subsidies and tax credits that can help offset the cost of insurance. By taking these steps, you can significantly lower your health insurance costs.

Best for Employer Coverage

AM Best Rating
A
Customer Service Rating
5

Pros

  • An established health insurance company with years of experience.

  • Rated highly for customer service and care.

  • A strong financial rating. 

  • Available nationwide.

  • A variety of plans for people of all ages and income levels. 

Cons

  • Doesn’t offer short-term health cover or individual health insurance.

Aetna is a top-rated health insurance provider that started in 1853. The company offers a wide range of health insurance plans, including Medicare Advantage, employer plans, dental insurance, and vision cover. Not only does the company boast one of the largest networks of health care providers, but it also consistently scores well for customer service and satisfaction. This makes it the perfect choice for employers or older people looking for reliable coverage.

Unfortunately, Aetna doesn't offer individual health plans or short-term cover. If you want this type of coverage, you’ll need to look at other providers.

Read our full review to learn more about Aetna and its different coverage options.

Tips for Choosing Health Insurance

With so many health insurance plans on the market, it can be challenging to know which one is right for you. Here are a few tips to help you choose a plan that will give you the coverage you need at a price you can afford.

  • Consider your medical history and current health needs. This will help you determine what type and level of coverage you need. For example, you will need a plan with lower deductibles and more comprehensive coverage if you have a chronic illness.

  • Research your options. Different health insurance plans are offered in different areas, so it’s important to check what’s available in your county. 

  • Compare the costs of different plans. Be sure to look at the monthly premium and the out-of-pocket expenses, such as deductibles and co-pays. Some plans have higher premiums but lower out-of-pocket costs, while others have the opposite. Choose the plan that fits your budget and meets your needs.

  • Look at the benefits offered by each plan. Some plans cover only basic services, while others offer more comprehensive coverage. Make sure the plan you choose covers the services you need.

  • Use an insurance agent to help you. Talk to a professional about your options and ensure you make the best decision for your needs. Insurance agents can save you significant time and money while you look for a plan. 

  • One last tip is to read the fine print of your health insurance contract before you sign it. Make sure you understand what is and is not covered by your insurance so that you don’t have nasty surprises later on. 

If you need any advice or assistance with finding a health insurance plan in your area, be sure to speak to one of our agents today. We’re happy to help in any way we can. 

Health Insurance Terms You Should Know

Premiums: These are monthly payments made to health insurance companies to keep your health insurance policy active. Your health insurance company uses the money from premiums to pay for your medical expenses when you receive care.

Deductible: A health insurance deductible is an amount you have to pay out-of-pocket for health care services before your health insurance begins to pay.

Co-pays: This is a fixed amount an insured person must pay for a covered health care service, usually when they receive it. The health insurance company then pays the rest of the covered amount.

Coinsurance: Coinsurance refers to your share of the cost of a covered medical service. Your health insurance company will pay a percentage of the allowed amount for the service, and you are responsible for the remainder.

Out-of-pocket costs: These are health care expenses that are not covered by health insurance. This can include co-pays, deductibles, and anything else that health insurance does not cover.

Health Insurance FAQs

What is the most popular health care plan?

HMO plans are the most popular type of health care plan. HMOs (health maintenance organizations) are managed care plans that offer comprehensive coverage for a monthly premium. HMOs typically have low deductibles and co-payments, and often cover preventive care services such as immunizations and screenings at no additional cost.

Can I have two health insurance plans?

Yes, you can have multiple health insurance plans as long as they are from different providers. However, having two health insurance policies may complicate claims and administration.

Can I buy health insurance and use it immediately?

No, you cannot purchase health insurance and use it immediately. There is usually a waiting period of at least a few weeks before your coverage begins. During this time, you may be able to get some medical care covered by your new insurer, but it will likely be limited.

Do I need health insurance?

In the U.S., health insurance is essential. While it's possible to pay for medical care out-of-pocket, this can become very expensive, and it's not always possible to predict when you'll need medical care. Having health insurance helps to protect you from unexpected medical costs.

Can I change my health insurance company?

Yes, you can always change your health insurance company if you feel you are not getting the best coverage. However, remember to enroll in a new plan before your old one expires to avoid any gaps in coverage. You may also be subject to a waiting period before your new coverage begins.

FAQ: Common Healthcare Questions

When and where can I sign up for health insurance?

There is an annual period during which you can sign up for health insurance, known as open enrollment. If you miss the open enrollment period there may be an option to enroll during a special period if you meet certain criteria. You’re eligible to enroll in a special period if you have a life event such as having a child, getting married, or losing other coverage. You can enroll through the health insurance marketplace or look at your employer’s health insurance offerings. Check out our guide to health insurance enrollment.

What is a deductible?

The amount of money that you pay before your insurance plan starts to pay. For example, if your deductible is $3000 then you will be responsible to pay the first $3000 of covered services. Once the deductible has been met, you may only need to pay the copayment or coinsurance, if it applies.

What is the difference between copayment and coinsurance?

The copayment and coinsurance are the same in the sense that they both go into effect once the deductible has been met. The key difference is that a copayment is a specified flat fee whereas coinsurance is a percentage of a health service.

If I am generally a healthy person, what type of plan is best for me?

A cost effective solution for a generally healthy, young person would be to look for a high deductible plan. Yes, you may have a higher amount to reach, however with a high deductible plan the premiums tend to be much lower. If you are a healthy person that doesn’t utilize a lot of health services, the money you save on health insurance premiums help pay for any out of pocket medical expenses that do occur. Not to mention most high deductible plans give you the option to open an HSA account to pay for covered medical expenses.

How long can I stay on my parent’s health insurance plan?

A child can remain on their parent’s health insurance plan until they turn 26 years old. You can join or remain on a parent’s plan even if you are married, attending school, not living with or financially dependent on your parents, or are eligible to enroll in your employer’s insurance plan.
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