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Medicare Advantage Plans 2021

Medicare Advantage Plans 2021: We researched all major Medicare insurance companies and their 2021 Medicare Advantage (Part C) offerings, and finally selected the top 6 Medicare Advantage plans.

Kaiser

  • 94.2% customer retention rate1
  • Highest CMS star ratings in states served
  • $0 deductible with every plan
  • $0 monthly premium option in many plans
  • Only serves 9 states

For the past 5 years, Kaiser has been ranked as the best Medicare Advantage General Plan in the annual JD Power 2 survey. Kaiser offers many additional benefits such as wellness training, transportation to medical appointments (depending on the plan), access to the gym and support groups. Kaiser wins our #1 position for premium customer service, extensive benefits and easy-to-use online tools.

AARP UnitedHealthcare

  • Nearly 2.5 million members will have no monthly premium for 20213
  • National plan availability
  • Above average satisfaction rating2
  • 3 types of Special Needs Plans (SNPs) offered
  • Limited online resources

With 26% of all Medicare Advantage enrolled receiving coverage by UnitedHealthCare4, it is the largest part C service provider in the country. Due to its size, UnitedHealthcare is able to offer price stability and a wide range of plans for every budget and lifestyle.

Humana

  • Numerous health and wellness benefits
  • Mail delivery for prescription drugs with some plans
  • Resources for managing chronic diseases
  • Ranked #1 for customer service (Newsweek5)
  • Humana Honor plan designed specifically for military veterans
  • Limited pharmacy options

Humana’s commitment to providing registrants with additional benefits allows them to win a place in our Top 3 selection. In addition to other benefits, Humana offers online tools to manage coverage, claims and cases.

Aetna

  • 72% of customers have a $0 monthly premium6
  • “Explorer” benefit allows you to receive in-network benefits from any Aetna facility
  • Plan availability varies significantly by location
  • Slightly below average satisfaction rating2

We think Aetna is a great choice for people who travel often. With its multiple offerings and its “explorer” advantage, Aetna offers flexibility to anyone who travels.

Blue Cross Blue Shield

  • 96% of hospitals and 95% of healthcare providers work with BCBS7
  • Multiple plans available in many locations
  • Special Needs Plans (SNPs) offered in many areas
  • Slightly below average satisfaction rating2

BCBS is a federation of 36 different health insurance companies including Anthem, CareFirst, Horizon, Premera, Wellmark and others. Collectively, BCBS companies are the third largest provider of Medicare Advantage plans.

Cigna

  • 89% of plans have a $0 monthly premium8
  • Most plans include prescription drug coverage
  • Most plans are HMOs (must stay in-network)
  • Above average annual rate customers switching plans9

Cigna wins a place on our list due to the affordable number of its package options. Despite a large number of monthly low-premium plans and $0, many Cigna plans still offer competitive advantages and even prescription drug coverage

Read More: Medicare Surprises: Three Medicare Surprises No One Told You

How We Chose the Best Medicare Advantage Plans and Companies for 2021

15 Insurers Considered 6 Insurers Selected
119 Hours Researched 1,242 Consumers Surveyed

More than half of respondents in September 2020 say they intend to buy a health plan for the first time or change their current health insurance plan during this year’s annual enrolment period from October 7 to December 15. Searching for and selecting the best Medicare Advantage diet for you can seem overwhelming without the right information at your disposal. Twenty-seven per cent of our eligible medicare respondents report that they do not feel informed enough to make a decision about medicare.

When researching the health insurance plan that is best able to offer you in 2021, take note of what our eligible medicare sponsors told us about the benefits they use and care most, and what factors they consider when deciding the best option for them. It is important to know all the facts, as this decision can have a significant impact on health and finances as you move forward with your decision. With this in mind, we assume the responsibility to conduct this research for you.

The Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) estimates that in 2020, the average beneficiary of health insurance can choose from 28 different Medicare Advantage plans offered by seven different companies. This is a lot of options! To create our list of the best Medicare Advantage companies, we hire a team of Medicare experts to answer the following questions:

  1. Which companies have the best extra benefits?

    • There are many Medicare Advantage plans and companies to choose from. One of the key factors that you should take into account when making this decision is knowing what are the most comprehensive benefits to you? 23% of medicare users considering changes to their current medicare plan say they want more diversified benefits from the plan.
    • These may include prescription drug coverage, gym subscriptions, and grocery deliveries. Our surveyed health insurance users say that the following benefits of Medicare Advantage are the most important to them:Best Medicare Advantage Plans 2021
    • The following is a breakdown of the types of benefits that most Medicare Advantage members will be able to choose based on the availability of the plane10:
    • Dental (97%)
    • Fitness (97%)
    • Vision (97%)
    • Hearing (97%)
    • Meals (96%)
    • Transportation assistance (92%)
    • In-home support (54%)
    • Bathroom safety (49%)
    • Telemonitoring services (29%)
    • Support for caregivers (12%)
  1. Which companies have the broadest coverage area (or plan availability)?

    • We want to make sure that if we recommend a company, there is a high probability that it will offer coverage of the plans you live in.
  2. Which companies have the best rates and rate stability?

    • For most people eligible for medicare, health care costs represent the second largest category of expenditures. Because Medicare Advantage premiums vary based on factors such as the plan you choose, where you live, age, and when you register, we purchase hundreds of plans nationwide to ensure that we only recommend companies that offer you the best value for money.
    • In addition, we look at the financial rating and loss ratio of each company. A business loss ratio can have a direct impact on policy rates and rate increases..
      Best Medicare Advantage Plans 2021
  3. Which companies have the best customer service?

    • You will inevitably need to contact your insurer’s customer service at some point. We only recommend companies that provide help and go further to make sure you are satisfied.
  4. Which companies have the easiest quote process?

    • Getting and comparing rates should be easy and fast. We only recommend companies that make this process simple and transparent.

Our team spent 119 hours finding answers to these five questions. To offer you the most comprehensive and reliable recommendations, we:

  • went through the registration process of hundreds of plans offered by 15 different insurance companies,
  • interviewed medicare beneficiaries, surveyed over a thousand people eligible for Medicare throughout the country,
  • talked to registered insurance agents,
  • read 442 reviews of verified clients,
  • verified each,
  • verified health financial of each company using A.M. Best and The National Association of Insurance Commissioners,
  • and validated our findings against reports from major third parties from organizations such as Newsweek,
  • Consumer Affairs and Medicare.gov.

Company

States Covered

Plans Offered

Best For

Prescription Drug

(MA-PD) Coverage Available?

Other Possible Plan Benefits*

Kaiser

9

HMO

Best Overall

Yes

Dental,

Fitness

Hearing,

Transportation,

Vision

AARP UnitedHealthcare

24

EPO,

HMO,

PFFS/POS

PPO

Value

Yes

Dental,

Fitness,

Hearing,

Nurse Hotline,

Vision

Humana

47

HMO,

MSA,

PFFS,

PPO,

SNP

Extra Benefits

Yes

Dental,

Fitness,

Hearing,

SilverSneakers,

Transportation,

Vision

Aetna

44

EPO,

HDHP,

HMO,

POS,

PPO

Travelers

Yes

Dental,

Fitness,

Hearing,

Meal Delivery**,

Nurse Hotline,

SilverSneakers,

Vision

Blue Cross Blue Shield

41

HMO,

HMO-POS,

MSA,

PFFS,

PPO,

NSP

Network Coverage

Yes

Dental,

Fitness,

Hearing,

SilverSneakers,

Vision

Cigna

26

HMO,

PFFS,

PPO

A Budget

Yes

Dental,

Fitness,

Hearing,

Nurse Hotline,

Vision

The benefits listed are common in an insurance company’s Medicare Advantage plans, but not standard** 73% of Aetna’s Medicare Advantage plans offer meal delivery after a hospital stay

Extra Benefits

Coverage and Plan Availability

Rates

Customer Service

Quote Process

OVERALL

Kaiser

★★★★★

[5.00]

★★★★

[4.00]

★★★★★

[5.00]

★★★★★

[5.00]

★★★★★

[5.00]

★★★★★

[4.80]

AARP UnitedHealthcare

★★★★

[4.00]

★★★★★

[5.00]

★★★★★

[5.00]

★★★★★

[5.00]

★★★★

[4.00]

★★★★★

[4.70]

Humana

★★★★★

[5.00]

★★★★

[4.00]

★★★★★

[4.75]

★★★★★

[4.50]

★★★★★

[5.00]

★★★★★

[4.65]

Aetna

★★★★

[3.75]

★★★

[3.00]

★★★★★

[5.00]

★★★★

[4.00]

★★★★★

[5.00]

★★★★★

[4.15]

Blue Cross Blue Shield

★★★★

[3.75]

★★★★★

[5.00]

★★★★★

[4.75]

★★★★

[3.50]

★★★

[3.00]

★★★★

[4.00]

Cigna

★★★★

[3.50]

★★★

[3.00]

★★★★★

[5.00]

★★★★

[3.50]

★★★★★

[4.50]

★★★★

[3.70]

Is Medicare Advantage Right For You? What You Should Know About Medicare Supplement, Medicare Advantage, and Original Medicare

Before you decide to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan, it is important to understand the main differences between the original Medicare Plan, Medicare Benefit and Medicare Supplement.

Original Medicare

The original health insurance plan includes Parts A and B. Part A covers hospital services, expenses for qualified nursing facilities and hospital care. Part B covers certain medical services, medical supplies, preventive care and outpatient care.

One thing you should know about the original medicare plan is that you are not paying for prescription drugs. 69% of respondents who qualify for medicare say they already have a Medicare Advantage Plan or are considering a Medicare Advantage Plan under an original medicare plan.

Best Medicare Advantage Plans 2021

Medicare Advantage

Medicare Advantage, also known as Part C, replaces the original health insurance plan if you register for coverage. Forty-five per cent of medicare users do not know that Medicare Advantage plans replace the original medicare plan and offer additional coverage. Benefits plans are offered by private insurance companies and are required to cover anything you would have with Original Medicare. Benefits plans offer additional coverage such as hearing services, prescription drugs, dental services and visual care.

Best Medicare Advantage Plans 2021

Medicare Supplement

Medigap Health Insurance Supplement, also known as Medigap, are supplementary insurance plans that fill the “gaps” of original health insurance and are sold by private health insurance companies. These plans, unlike Medicare Advantage, are used in combination with your initial health insurance coverage. Many health supplement plans do not cover benefits such as vision, dentistry, glasses, hearing aids or prescription drug coverage. If you want prescription drugs, you must register for a plan that is separate from Part D of medicare.

How to Choose Between a Medicare Advantage or Medicare Supplement Plan

A Medicare Advantage Plan or Medicare Supplement may help minimize some of these costs associated with original health insurance. To find out if a medicare supplement or Advantage Medicare plan is right for you, questions should include:

  • Do I already have additional coverage, such as dental, vision and hearing, or do I want it to be included in my medicare plan?
  • Do I need to include prescription drugs in my diet? What kind of prescription drug coverage am I looking for? Will I split my time between two or more houses in different states?
  • Do I want to be able to choose any doctor in the country to receive medical care?

While these are viable alternatives, you cannot enroll in the Medicare Advantage and Medical Supplement plan at the same time.

Read More :How Can I Find a Health-Care Provider Who Accepts a Medicare Plan from Humana?

Types of Medicare Advantage Plans

There are several types of Medicare Advantage Diets. The four most common types of Medicare Advantage plans are:

  • HMOs (Health Maintenance Organizations) — These plans offer medical coverage and health care from a particular group of physicians, specialists and hospitals that are part of a plan’s approved network.
  • PPO (Preferred Supplier Organizations): You have the option to choose a doctor, specialist and off-grid hospital if you wish. You can receive medical care without the recommendation of a primary care doctor.
  • PFFS (Private Service Fee) — These packages allow you to access any Medicare licensed doctor, specialist or hospital, provided you accept your plan and agree to treat yourself.
  • NPS (Special Needs Plans): NPS offer the same health insurance services as all Medicare Advantage plans.
  • They also offer additional benefits for people with chronic diseases, such as cancer and heart failure. Care is provided on the network unless there are special circumstances such as dialysis outside the region. In this scenario, you will be provided with a primary care physician or care coordinator.

According to a KFF study, Medicare Advantage registered an average limit of $4,925 in 2020 for network services with HMO and PPO. With HMO plans that do not cover off-grid providers, the average loan limit is $4,486. The average amount with PPO increases to $8,828 for off-grid services. Local and regional OPPs recorded an average pocket limit of $8,795 for network services and $9,010for off-grid services.

How to Choose the Best Medicare Advantage Plan For You

When you start thinking about which Medicare Advantage plan you want to register, you should consider important questions such as:

  • Review the Medicare Advantage plans offered in your area. Offers and package prices can vary considerably from one postal code to another, not to mention state to state, so make sure the plans that interest you are an option for you.
  • Check if your plan is an HMO, PPO, PFFS or SNP. Check if your primary care doctor is online because you will save money on co-payments if you perform this comparison step. Review the benefits offered by each plan.
  • You might be attracted to the diet with the most additional benefits, but consider which of them is most likely to use.
  • Compare the costs and maximum limits of cocountries, co-insurance and maximum costs when comparing plans.

When comparing basic coverage, you will want to see the following:

  • Monthly deductible
  • annual medical allowance
  • Annual drug coverage deductible

When reviewing your Medicare Advantage options, you should review the premium. Many Medicare Advantage plans do not have a premium at all. Any premium should be an affordable amount. In addition, many plans do not have a deductible. Why pay more for protection if you don’t have to? Having protection from day one, rather than having to pay a deductible first, can be a plus.

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