Best Arizona Health Insurance

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Contributor, Benzinga
March 24, 2022

Quick Look: The Best Arizona Health Insurance

  • Best for No-Cost Virtual and Preventive Care: Oscar
  • Best for Nationwide Coverage: BCBS of Arizona
  • Best Pharmacy Programs: Cigna
  • Best for Affordable Health Insurance Plans With Generous Benefits: Ambetter
  • Best for Affordable Plans, Some With No Deductible: Bright Health

Think finding cheap health insurance in Arizona is as overwhelming as hiking the entire Grand Canyon? The number of plans available makes it difficult to decide which one is best for you.

You might have questions about health insurance in Arizona. Follow this guide to learn how health insurance works, how to get it and which insurance companies offer cheap health insurance in Arizona.

The Best Arizona Health Insurance

We took the time to research the best health insurance providers in Arizona for you. In addition to plan costs, we looked at awards and additional benefits from each provider. Check out our top picks for cheap health insurance in Arizona.

1. Oscar

Oscar Insurance offers a range of HMO health plans in Arizona. Plans from Oscar are some of the cheapest in Arizona.

They offer plans in several tiers so you can get the cheapest insurance, depending on your coverage needs. The company offers a doctor on call at no extra charge, which allows you to make a call in the Oscar mobile app and speak to a board-certified doctor anytime, anywhere.

2. BlueCross BlueShield of Arizona

BlueCross BlueShield, one of the largest networks in the country, offers health insurance in a majority of states through local companies. BlueCross BlueShield of Arizona is the 2019 runner-up for the J.D. Power Health Plan Satisfaction Study award.

The company ranks highly among health insurance providers in categories like coverage and benefits, provider choices and communication with customers. The overall satisfaction rating from J.D. Power is among the best of providers in the Southwest.

3. Cigna

Cigna ranks among the best of providers in the 2019 J.D. Power Health Plan Satisfaction Study in customer service, provider choice and ease of billing.

The company offers several cheap health insurance plans in Arizona. In addition to a large provider network, Cigna gives members access to several mobile apps.

These apps help make it easier to manage your account and make healthy choices.

4. Ambetter from Arizona Complete Health

Ambetter plans from Arizona Complete Health give you a handful of plan options for cheap health insurance. The company also offers plenty of additional benefits if you choose to enroll in an Ambetter plan.

The My Health Pays rewards program allows you to earn cash for future purchases or services by making healthy choices.

Your rewards can be redeemed for doctor’s visit copays, put toward your deductible and even used to pay your monthly utility bills.

5. Bright Health

  • Bright HealthCare
    Best For:
    Affordable plans, some with no deductible
    VIEW PROS & CONS:

    Bright HealthCare provides small business, individual, family and Medicare Advantage health insurance plans. These plans are only available in limited markets in the United States, and the company further limits its reach by only covering services performed by participating providers.

    There are several advantages to the plans from this company. Its variety of plan options can provide a great value at a low cost for many people. Telehealth services are also covered by these plans. Even with its advantages, though, there is 1 downside — a high number of customer complaints.

    Overall, Bright HealthCare is a solid option to explore for those looking for affordable health plans, especially healthy people who don’t anticipate needing much healthcare.

If you live in Phoenix, you can take advantage of Bright Health insurance plans. The plans are cheap and give you access to Bright Health Rewards.

This rewards program gives you cash back for healthy choices. When you enroll in a Bright Health plan, you’ll get a debit card that is loaded with your cash rewards. Anyone on your Bright Health plan, such as a spouse or children, can earn rewards for the family.

What is Health Insurance? 

Health insurance helps you pay for medical bills, like a hospital stay or surgery. You pay a set fee each month, called a premium, to your insurance company. If you need to visit the doctor or go to the hospital, your insurance pays for part of the bill.

How to Get Cheap Health Insurance in Arizona

You might be wondering how to get health insurance or how to know if you’re currently covered. Most employers offer an employee health insurance benefit plan. An employer plan (group plan) allows you and your coworkers to receive discounted insurance premiums. Employers not only offer a plan but pay for a portion of the premium as well.

Most group health insurance plans offer coverage to your dependents, too. Your dependents include your spouse if you’re married or any children you have. Some group health plans also cover unmarried domestic partners.

If your health insurance plan offers coverage for domestic partners, you and your partner may need to sign an affidavit of domestic partnership. This form states you’re in a committed romantic relationship, live together and plan to continue your relationship for the foreseeable future. This helps to reduce the chance of ineligible individuals who take advantage of health insurance benefits, such as roommates.

Under the Affordable Care Act, children are considered dependents up to age 26. For example, let’s say you’re a student in Arizona and have health insurance from one of your parents’ employers. You’re eligible to stay on that plan as long as your parent continues to enroll in the plan. Even if you graduate and take a job that offers insurance, you can turn down employer health insurance coverage and stay on your parent’s plan until you turn 26.

Don’t have health insurance through an employer? Too old to be on a parent’s plan? There are still plenty of options for health insurance. You can shop for an individual health insurance plan. Most individual plans cost more per month than an employer plan.

You may want to pay for individual health insurance if that’s your only option. One large medical bill could end up costing you tens of thousands of dollars. Health insurance can help reduce the amount you have to pay out of pocket.

Average Cost of Health Insurance in Arizona

The annual average cost of health insurance premiums in Arizona is $1,554 for employees on a group plan — about $130 per month that you must pay. Employers cover an average of $4,675 in premiums each year, or just under $390 per month. The total average cost for a group health insurance plan in Arizona is $6,229.

Average premiums for individual insurance plans in Arizona in 2019 range from $359–$592 per month.

There are options to find affordable health insurance in Arizona. Your monthly premium is primarily based on 3 things:

  • Age
  • ZIP code
  • Whether you use tobacco

You can’t change your age and probably can’t change your location, but you can stop smoking. Cutting out tobacco use can help you save money on health insurance. Other ways to lower your insurance premiums include:

  • Choose a high deductible plan: A deductible is the amount of money you must pay out of pocket before your insurance pays for medical bills. Some plans offer a high deductible in exchange for lower monthly premiums.
  • Get a catastrophic plan: Catastrophic plans are only available if you’re under 30 or qualify for a hardship exemption, which means you’ve proven you can’t afford other health insurance options. Catastrophic plans cover a few basic, preventive doctor visits per year. Any other expenses must be paid out of pocket until the high deductible is met.
  • Check subsidy eligibility: If you meet certain income requirements, you could be eligible for a subsidy from the government to help cover health insurance costs.

Types of Health Coverage

Before you look into your coverage options, it’s important to know the common terms you’ll see when shopping for health insurance.

  • Deductible: Your deductible is the amount of money you have to pay for medical services before your insurance starts to pay. Deductibles usually reset each year, so you’ll have to pay the deductible every year you’re enrolled in the plan. At the same time, don’t take a high deductible health plan—HDHP—just because it’s cheaper. Make sure you can afford the policy you have chosen based on how much you will need to pay out of pocket.
  • Coinsurance: The percentage of medical services you have to cover out of pocket. For example, you see your doctor and have a 20% coinsurance. You pay 20% of the visit bill and your insurance pays the remaining 80% if you’ve met your deductible.
  • Copayment: Like coinsurance, a copayment is an amount you have to pay for medical services. Instead of a percentage of the cost of a service, however, a copayment is a fixed price for specific services. A doctor’s office visit, for example, may have a $20 copayment.
  • Provider network: Your health insurance provider will contract with certain doctors and health care facilities, known as the provider network. You often receive a lower cost when you visit a doctor within your network.
  • Out-of-pocket limit: This is the maximum amount of money you’ll pay out of pocket for medical services covered by your insurance plan. Your out-of-pocket limit doesn’t include the cost of your monthly premiums.
  • Dependents: Adding more dependents to your policy increases premiums. This is inevitable, but make sure that the carrier does raise prices too much for each dependent.
  • Pharmacy coverage: Some policies are more expensive than others because their pharmacy benefits are enhanced or allow for specialty medications.

Most health insurance plans fall into 2 types of coverage:

  • Health maintenance organization (HMO): HMO plans require you to visit in-network doctors and health care facilities. If you choose an out-of-network doctor you’ll probably have to pay the entire bill out of pocket, except in emergencies. You may also have to choose a primary care provider and get a referral if you need to see a specialist.
  • Preferred provider organization (PPO): Unlike HMO plans, PPO plans don’t require you to choose a primary provider. You can also choose to visit any health care provider you wish. You’ll usually receive more coverage if you go to an in-network doctor or facility.

HMO plans tend to be less expensive than PPO plans. However, you usually have to live within a certain service area to qualify for HMO plans. HMO plans also don’t offer the flexibility of PPO plans.

What Does Health Insurance Cover?

Under the Affordable Care Act, health insurance companies have to cover certain services and treatments. There are 10 benefits that all health insurance plans must offer, known as the 10 essential benefits.

  • Preventive and wellness services, including chronic disease management
  • Laboratory services
  • Pediatric care, or care for children — including dental and vision coverage
  • Ambulatory patient services, or care you get without being admitted to a hospital
  • Emergency services
  • Hospitalization
  • Mental health and substance use disorder care
  • Prescription drugs
  • Pregnancy and newborn care both during pregnancy and after birth
  • Rehabilitative and habilitative services and devices, or services to help people with injuries or disabilities regain or develop mental and physical skills

What Does Health Insurance Not Cover? 

Each health insurance plan has to offer coverage for the 10 essential benefits, there are certain services and treatments not usually covered. Most treatments your health insurance won’t cover are considered non-medically necessary or too experimental in nature.

Some examples of services most health insurance plans in Arizona don’t cover include:

  • Weight-loss treatments or surgery
  • Cosmetic surgery
  • Alternative therapies or treatments, such as acupuncture
  • Adult dental and vision care
  • Nursing home care

Find Affordable Arizona Health Insurance

Find cheap health insurance in Arizona by looking at plans from our top choices for affordable insurance companies. Compare several quotes and get covered by health insurance today.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q

Should health insurance cover elective procedures?

A

No, health insurance generally does not cover elective procedures. In rare cases, they may be covered for reconstructive purposes.

Q

When do you renew your health insurance?

A

You will renew your health insurance every year during the open enrollment period in the fall.