Providing health insurance to employees may assist the owner of a small firm in attracting and retaining personnel. What is the best small business health insurance provider? We ranked the best health insurance providers serving small businesses, so you don’t have to. The health insurance industry is, however, complex.
Best Small Business Health Insurance
Health insurance makes regular checkups, preventative care, and immediate medical attention more affordable. Employees and their families depend significantly on employer-provided health insurance, making it one of the most sought-after perks of employment.
Group health insurance is an attractive perk that many small business owners offer to their staff. Finding your way through the maze of health insurance plans, policies, and industry terms can appear daunting when searching for an insurance company for your small business.
#1. United Healthcare’s
I recommend UnitedHealthcare as the best small-business health insurance plan for workers. With close to 70 million customers, it is the largest insurance company in the United States. Furthermore, United Healthcare has alliances with over 6,500 healthcare facilities and 1.3 million medical personnel. Besides its widespread coverage (offered in all fifty states), its extensive selection of plans and services, including alternatives for temporary workers, earns high marks.
Plans such as H.M.O., P.P.O., EPO, and P.O.S. are all available from United Healthcare for companies of any size. It further distributes valuable materials like free fitness, diet, and self-care guidelines and offers discounts to clients who bundle health insurance with dentistry and vision coverage.
#2. Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS)
BCBS is an umbrella brand for 34 separate, locally-based health insurance providers. Health and wellness discounts are accessible to members who select BCBS plans through Blue365. Furthermore, Fitbit and other fitness trackers, Target Optical eyeglasses and contacts, and Freshly Meal delivery boxes are all on sale. Members can access medical professionals in over 200 countries through the Blue Cross Blue Shield Global Core.
Finally, BCBS is a solid alternative for any small business owner wishing to provide their employees with reliable coverage and diverse options. However, double-check your local affiliate’s coverage selections and customer service ratings before choosing BCBS for your small business’s healthcare needs.
Elevance (previously Anthem, Inc.) is a significant player in its operating regions due to its reasonably priced plans and vast network of healthcare providers. This means that employees have more options for providers and are significantly less likely to have to seek treatment outside of their network. Numerous web sources also claim that Elevance customers will pay less for coverage.
Look up reviews of your local subsidiary before choosing Elevance for your insurance needs. Elevance is currently available in the following states: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, Virginia, and Wisconsin.
To point out, Aetna made our list because of its focus on preventative care alternatives. Indeed, Aetna has significantly shifted toward value-based care (V.B.C.) in recent years. This healthcare perspective emphasizes the value of preventive treatments and healthy lifestyle choices. All plans incorporate V.B.C. elements that encourage plan participants to make healthy choices, such as eating a nutritious diet and stopping smoking.
Because of the excellent rating it received in internet reviews for customer service, Cigna has earned a spot on our list. In addition to offering many things we’ve seen elsewhere, including dental and vision add-ons, Cigna also provides live customer support around the clock, 365 days a year.
Best Small Business Health Insurance Providers
A small business is commonly defined as an employer with one to 50 employees, excluding the owner, their spouse, and any family members, regarding health insurance coverage. However, some jurisdictions and private firms consider organizations with one to 100 employees as small businesses. The following are the best small business insurance providers:
#1. Blue Cross Blue Shield is Best Overall.
Blue Cross Blue Shield can accommodate the needs of any business thanks to coverage in every ZIP code in the United States and a selection of national networks. Further, the organization was included in our top choice for the best overall health insurance provider. However, benefits and customer satisfaction scores differ by region because BCBS is a consortium of businesses. It’s crucial to assess your BCBS provider for things like client complaints.
The workplace wellness programs offered by BCBS differ by state. Still, as an illustration, BCBS Mississippi certifies firm executives to lead fitness courses. It provides substantial health insurance premium discounts for staff members who pledge to exercise at least twice weekly.
#2. Oscar: Best Provider for Telemedicine
With a convenient mobile app, Oscar makes it simple for your employees to request virtual treatment, and with most plans, there is no fee for online medical consultations. Moreover, staff members may track their deductibles, send messages to their care team, refill prescriptions, and occasionally receive rewards for reaching their goals using the app.
Meanwhile, Oscar and Cigna have teamed up to provide members access to the latter’s local and national provider networks. You can offer your employees two network options, including the Cigna Behavioral Health Network, which doesn’t need expert referrals.
#3. United Healthcare: Best Insurance Provider With Extra Benefits
You can give your employees a range of plan-type options with UnitedHealthcare. Regardless of whether you decide to include extra coverage like vision, dental, hearing, disability, and absence benefits, as well as supplemental, pet, and life insurance benefits, it offers combined savings. UnitedHealthcare provides the only program of its kind in the country, and it is specifically tailored for part-time and seasonal employees.
Traditional major medical coverage options include level-funded and fully insured plans, as well as a less expensive level-funded minimum essential coverage option. Likewise, UHC provides a range of workplace wellness programs, including incentives for physical activity and a free online weight loss program. A discount scheme is also included in group health plans.
#4. Aetna: Best Self-Insured Plans Provider
Comparatively, Aetna is our top recommendation for self-insured funding options if you want more plan flexibility and the chance of higher savings. Aetna self-funding can save you up to 25% on monthly costs, and the insurer returns 50% of the surplus to your firm. Simultaneously, stop-loss insurance protects you against excessive charges. Employees can also open an HSA account and pay no copays for numerous MinuteClinic services. Keep in mind that not all fully insured groups receive the same perks.
#5. Humana: Best Provider for Customizable Plans
Small business owners can get the best health insurance plan from Humana. Humana excels in its individualized insurance plans and has an index of complaints that is below average despite being highly ranked for overall coverage quality.
Best Small Business Health Insurance California
Health insurance for small businesses in California has more options than ever before, with a variety of carriers such as Blue Shield and many others, plenty of health insurance plans available through Covered California for Small Business, and many options such as HMOs and PPOs, and affordable premiums for health care on the individual market. Group plans, on the other hand, are becoming increasingly expensive.
#1. Anthem Blue Cross
Evidently, Anthem Blue Cross is Anthem, Inc.’s California subsidiary and operates independently of Blue Shield of California. Anthem Blue Cross provides HMO, PPO, and Health Savings Account (HSA) plans for small, large, and senior groups.
Overall, Anthem’s PPO network is extensive, covering the majority of doctors and hospitals. Anthem Blue Cross insures more PPO members in California than any other insurer while providing employees with integrated health care and user-friendly web resources.
#2. Kaiser Permanente
In terms of revenue and membership, Kaiser Permanente is the most extensive health plan in California. Kaiser is a non-profit business based in California. They also provide PPO plans for small and large employer groups. By marketing itself as a “comprehensive health care delivery system” via Kaiser providers, Kaiser distinguishes itself.
As the state’s largest managed care organization, Kaiser can provide many cheap small business health insurance plans and options.
Undoubtedly, Aetna provides small and large group coverage to California employers. Their group plans are remarkably adaptable, allowing companies to offer their employees complete-, medium-, and narrow-network HMO networks simultaneously.
Aetna’s competitive and affordable small business employer plans include a variety of wellness and finance alternatives. Aetna Funding Advantage is a self-funded solution that offers small businesses the benefits of self-funding.
#4. Blue Shield of California
After Kaiser and Anthem Blue Cross, Blue Shield of California is the state’s third-largest health plan. Blue Shield of California, a non-profit corporation headquartered only in California, provides coverage in the individual, small, and large group sectors. Blue Shield’s small group plans are moderately priced; nevertheless, business owners can either offer a complete network or a restricted network, not both.
Best Small Business Health Insurance Texas
The more employees you have, the more likely you are to provide health insurance in Texas. Only 28% of businesses with fewer than ten employees offer a group health insurance plan, compared to 53% of businesses with 10 to 24 employees, 68% with 25 to 99 employees, and 100% with 100 to 499 employees. As a result, the larger your firm, the greater the demand for small business health insurance in Texas.
#1. Blue Cross Blue Shield
Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) is one of the largest healthcare providers in the United States. Its extensive provider network and distinctive member benefits make it simple and convenient to obtain covered medical care. However, because BCBS is a collection of separately owned regional organizations, customer service scores may differ by region. Furthermore, its average premiums are higher than many other health insurance firms.
Blue Cross Blue Shield may not be the ideal option if cost is your primary priority. Still, it may be an excellent alternative for people who appreciate a flexible provider network.
#2. United Healthcare
Forbes’ top recommendation is United Healthcare, which they claim is a strong option for the same reasons that BCBS is: size of network and diversity of plans. According to Investopedia, they are the best network. However, Investopedia points out a previous issue with mental health coverage that United needs to address. United Healthcare has reduced Texas small-group health insurance coverage.
Emphatically, Aetna is ranked third on the Forbes list, while Investopedia ranks it the Best for Health Fund Expense Options. Aetna plans in Texas are self-funded, which means that the company, not the insurance carrier, sponsors and bears the risk and costs of employee healthcare.
Why Should Small Businesses Offer Health Insurance?
Small business health insurance can demonstrate to your employees that their health is vital to you. Offering a group health plan as an employee benefit equally shows that you value your employees and see them as an asset to your company.
Can a Small Business Owner Write off Health Insurance?
Small employers in the small business sector can deduct a significant portion of their health insurance-related expenditures from their federal company tax obligations.
What Is the Best Private Health Insurance in the US?
According to Forbes Advisor’s review, Kaiser Permanente is the highest-ranked health insurance provider in the United States. Blue Cross Blue Shield and UnitedHealthcare are two other top-ranked health insurance companies.
What Are the 4 Most Common Health Insurance Plans?
The four most common health insurance plans are:
- HMO: HMOs are managed care plans with comprehensive healthcare services through a network of doctors and hospitals.
- A PPO is a managed care plan that allows members to see out-of-network doctors and hospitals for a higher copay or coinsurance. PPOs have more premiums than HMOs.
- POS plans combine both HMOs and PPOs. POS plans need a referral from a primary care doctor for specialists, and members can go to out-of-network doctors and hospitals at a higher cost.
- An EPO plan only covers services from doctors and hospitals in its network. EPOs have lower premiums than HMOs but more restrictions on out-of-network care.
Is United Healthcare Better Than Cigna?
With 1.5 million providers, Cigna has a broader network than UnitedHealthcare. Cigna has more positive online customer reviews than United Healthcare. In 2022, according to J.D.’s research, UnitedHealthcare scored higher than Cigna in various regions.
Which Are Best Affordable Medical Insurance?
Kaiser Permanente, Aetna, and Oscar have the lowest average rates for Bronze health insurance policies. A Bronze plan is the most affordable health insurance with comprehensive medical benefits, with a monthly cost of $408 in 2023.
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Is Cigna a Good Insurance?
The NCQA rates Cigna plans as being mid- to high-performing. Most plans have ratings ranging from 2.5 to 3.5 for customer satisfaction, prevention, and treatment, indicating that clients are generally pleased with the services they receive. Consumer Affairs has given Cigna a rating of 3.6/5. This rating is based on approximately 300 reviews from customers.
Is Health Insurance Even Worth It Anymore?
Health insurance is costly, and we’ve all wondered, “Is it worth what I’m paying?” This can be a bothersome question for the young or people in generally good health who believe they don’t require much more than a yearly check-up and flu vaccination.
However, the simple answer is “yes”—unless you can pay tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars in health care expenditures if your health takes an unforeseen turn. Visiting an urgent care center, even for a short time and without prior planning, can cost over $1,000.
Is Health Insurance Is Tax Deductible?
The general standard deduction for insurance premiums, including premiums for life and pension insurance, is used to deduct basic and supplementary insurance premiums.
What Is the Difference Between a PPO and an HMO?
HMOs don’t cover treatment from healthcare professionals who aren’t in their network.
Actual medical crises are the lone exception. You can see healthcare providers outside your network if you have a PPO. However, the cost and deductible for seeing an out-of-network physician will be more significant.
Insuring Your Small Business
The law does not force small business owners to offer health insurance to their staff. With that stated, if you choose to give health insurance to your employees, be careful to understand how your state classifies a small business because it will affect the requirements for what you must offer.
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