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As the birthplace of well-known brands including Pizza Hut and Icee, Kansas is no stranger to monumental firsts. But if you’re wondering where to find affordable health insurance, make this detailed health insurance comparison article from Benzinga your first choice to compare and review the best options for health insurance Kansas.
Get Health Insurance in Kansas
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The Best Health Insurance in Kansas:
- Best Overall in Kansas: Humana
- Most Affordable in Kansas: Aetna
- Best Customer Service: Blue Cross Blue Shield
- Best for Claims: Cigna
- Best for Custom Coverage: UnitedHealthcare
What is Health Insurance?
Health insurance is designed to cover you in case of an accident, injury or illness. It can also help you better manage chronic health conditions like diabetes or asthma. If you’re wondering how to get health insurance, you have lots of options available. Many residents in Kansas get health insurance from their employers, but others can choose to buy a plan on the state exchange or purchase an individual or family plan directly from a health insurance company.
Because of the high cost of medical care and treatment, not having health insurance can put you at a higher risk of having your savings wiped out in the event of an emergency or injury. Health insurance can help ease some of this burden by paying for some or all of your care.
In researching your options for affordable health insurance in Kansas, it’s a good idea to take the time to learn the meanings of some of the different terms you’ll come across. This will help you be better prepared to know how much you’re responsible for paying and how much the insurance company will cover in any given situation.
- Premium: This is an amount that you pay each month to the insurance company to keep your policy active.
- Deductible: The deductible is the money you pay out of pocket before your insurance begins to pay. Oftentimes, insurance companies have high deductibles and low premiums, and vice versa. It’s important to find the right balance for your needs, your budget and how you expect to use your insurance coverage. If you don’t get sick often, it makes sense to have a higher deductible and pay less per month in premiums.
- Copay: This is a small and generally inexpensive flat fee paid to your doctor or for prescription drugs. It does not go toward covering your deductible.
- Coinsurance: This is a percentage that’s shared between you and the insurance company. For any given treatment, surgery or other covered procedure, you pay a certain percentage and the insurance pays the other percentage. You might see numbers like 70/30 or 80/20 which means the insurance takes care of the first 70% or 80% and you are responsible for the remaining 30% or 20%.
Average Cost of Health Insurance in Kansas
Health insurance in Kansas costs an average of $1,700 per month for a family of 4. Although health insurance doesn’t offer a variety of discounts like car or homeowner’s insurance, there are still things that you can do to help lower how much you pay.
- Body mass index (BMI): A lower BMI can help cut your risk of chronic illnesses associated with being overweight or obese, including heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and more.
- Tobacco use: Smokers pay more for health insurance than nonsmokers. If you smoke, taking steps to quit is not only good for your health but good for your wallet as well.
- Age: Older people usually have more health problems, and as a result typically pay more for health insurance than someone who is 20 or 30 years old.
Types of Health Coverage
A variety of health insurance types are available in Kansas, with different processes designed to help you save money on services. You’ll want to carefully consider the type of insurance and plans you choose — some of them cost you more if you see doctors outside of the established networks.
- Health maintenance organization (HMO): HMOs offer some of the lowest prices for health insurance but also somewhat more restrictive networks. With an HMO, you have a primary physician who is responsible for the majority of your care. If you need to see a specialist, you need a referral from your primary care physician. Both the physician and the specialist should be within the HMO network, otherwise you’ll pay much more (if not the whole cost) of seeing a doctor outside of the network. With more tightly controlled healthcare access, there’s less paperwork involved, but you’ll want to be sure to check the HMO network to see if your doctor is a participating member.
- Preferred provider organization (PPO): A PPO works similarly to an HMO in that you have a network of doctors to choose from, but you don’t need a referral to see a specialist. You can also see doctors and specialists outside of the network, but it will cost you more, and you’ll need to file a claim with the PPO to be reimbursed for some of the expenses. There is more paperwork involved as a result, but you get greater flexibility in terms of choosing your own doctor and hospital.
- Point of service (POS) plan: This hybrid type of plan combines some elements of HMOs and PPOs. There’s not as much paperwork to deal with to file a claim for reimbursement, but at the same time, you can also see any doctor or hospital you want. You’ll be required to pay for the treatment at the time of service and then be reimbursed by the insurance company afterward.
What Does Health Insurance Cover?
Although every health insurance company is different and offers varying degrees of coverage, most cover some or all of the following types of medical-related treatments:
- Ambulance services
- Emergency services
- Newborn and maternity care
- Prescription drugs
- Rehabilitative services
- Laboratory services
- Mental health care
- Wellness checks
- Pediatric care
What Does Health Insurance Not Cover?
There are a few things that health insurance does not typically cover, including:
- Elective or cosmetic procedures
- Long-term nursing home care
- Infertility treatments
- Alternative therapies
- Dental, vision and hearing
With dental and vision care, you may be able to get additional riders (like add-ons for your insurance policy) that allow you to get some coverage for vision and dental care.
Best Health Insurance Providers in Kansas
The best health insurance is different for everyone and depends on your specific needs, as well as your budget. We’ve reviewed the best health insurance providers to help make your decision even easier.
According to the National Center for Quality Assurance, Humana has received some of the highest ratings for quality health insurance in Kansas. Available as both an HMO as well as a POS plan, you’re able to choose which one best meets your requirements and budget.
Humana has a large network of doctors and hospitals throughout Kansas so you can feel confident that you’re getting care from physicians and specialists you know and trust. The plan was rated particularly highly for patients with diabetes, and initiatives are available to help with proper glucose control and statin adherence.
Aetna scores well in quality and timeliness of care received by its members. The ratings of primary care doctors, specialists and coordination of care are all rated highly.
Claims handling is also rated well. If you have a smartwatch, be sure to check out Aetna Attain, an app that rewards you for healthy behaviors and exercises. The company also offers dental and vision plans for an additional fee.
3. Blue Cross Blue Shield
As one of the largest national health insurance providers, Blue Cross and Blue Shield enjoys one of the largest networks of doctors, specialists and providers. A variety of plans are available and you can search for your doctor, hospital or specialist directly online.
This is a particularly good health insurance company if you travel often; it provides both short- and long-term global health insurance coverage. Check out its free Blue365 network for a variety of discounts on health and wellness products for the home and family.
Cigna offers a wide range of health insurance plans in Kansas, including plans with dental and vision benefits. It operates in a network of over 500,000 physicians and 8,000 hospitals across the country.
Similar to other health insurance providers, Cigna also provides wellness rewards that include free gym memberships to help members stay active and healthy. Users rate Cigna’s customer service particularly high, as well as its promptness in paying claims.
UnitedHealthcare also includes a large network of doctors and hospitals. What makes this company particularly attractive to members is its vast improvements in prescription drug coverage.
Like with other health insurance companies, you can search for doctors and hospitals in your area online before you decide on a plan. UnitedHealthcare offers a variety of plans with varying deductibles and premiums to fit a wide range of needs.
Getting the Right Health Insurance Coverage
There’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to health insurance in Kansas. It’s a good idea to get a quote from each of the companies profiled here to see which one can save you the most money while offering you the best selection of benefits. By understanding your coverage options, you’ll be able to choose the right plan for yourself and your family without breaking the bank.
Each of the companies profiled has an online quote system that can connect you with an experienced insurance specialist who can provide you with more details and a no-obligation quote. Getting health insurance coverage in Kansas has never been easier or more affordable.
Frequently Asked Questions