Independence Blue Cross vs. UnitedHealthcare-2021

Independence Blue Cross is the leading health insurance provider in southeastern Pennsylvania of the United States. They have been working hard to improve the member’s and communities’ health and well-being for more than 80 years. Founded in 1938, the Independence Blue Cross headquarter is located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA. Since then, they have been serving over two million people in the region and seven million nationwide.

UnitedHealthcare of the UnitedHealth Group Incorporated is a U.S.-based for-profit managed health care company. The headquarter of UnitedHealthcare is located in Minnetonka, Minnesota. They are dedicated to helping people live healthier lives and improving the health system for everyone. Under their network, UnitedHealthcare has more than 1.3 million doctors and health care professionals who serve the members with great care.

Independence Blue Cross

Independence Blue Cross offers health insurance plans that provide monetary coverage for the residents of Pennsylvania and some other parts of the United States. Their health insurance plans minimize unexpected hospital expenses. IBC offers the following health insurance plans:

Health Plans for Individual and Family

Independence Blue Cross offers health insurance plans for its members and their family. These plans are designed to protect them from the unexpected expenses of medical services. You can opt for the Affordable Care Act plan that includes Gold, Silver, Bronze, and Catastrophic plans. The following chart will help you understand the plans:

Gold Silver Bronze Catastrophic
Monthly premium $$$$ $$$ $$ $
Cost when you receive care $ $$ $$$ $$$$
Good option if you… Tend to use a lot of health care services Need to balance your monthly premium with your out-of-pocket costs Don’t use a lot of health care services Meet the requirements and need “just-in-case coverage”

Besides these, Independence Blue Cross also offers five main types of plans, such as HMO, PPO, EPO, HMO Proactive, and EPO Reserve. The following chart will give you a correct idea about the mentioned plans:

HMO HMO Proactive PPO EPO EPO Reserve with an HSA
In-network coverage X X X X X
Out-of-network coverage X
National access with the BlueCard® network X X X
Requires selection of a primary care physician X X
No referrals needed for specialists X X X
Includes a tiered network so you can choose when to save on care X

Moreover, Independent Blue Cross offers the following plans for individuals and families –

  • Health Savings Account (HAS)
  • Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)
  • Low-Income plans
  • Dental and Vision plans
  • International Health plans
  • LifeSecure plans

Health Plans for Employers

Independence Blue Cross offers insurance plans for both large and small group businesses throughout the nation. They offer medical, dental, vision, pharmacy benefits, Medicare Supplemental, and Medicare Advantage products.

Small Business plans

Independence Blue Cross offers the Blue Solutions® health plans for employers of small businesses. These plans are available at lower costs and provide high-quality services. The plans include –

  • Personal Choice® PPO plans
  • Personal Choice® EPO plans
  • Keystone Direct POS plans
  • Keystone HMO plans
  • Keystone HMO Proactive plans
  • High-deductible health plans (HDHPs)
  • Pharmacy benefits
  • Vision benefits
  • Dental benefits

Moreover, they also offer to spend accounts plans for small businesses with their BlueSaverSM plan. These include:

  • Health Savings Account (HSA)
  • Health Reimbursement Account (HRA)

Large Business Plans

Independence Blue Cross offers the following plans for large business employers:

  • Keystone HMO plans
  • Keystone POS and Direct POS plans
  • Personal Choice® PPO plans
  • High-deductible health plans (HDHPs)
  • Choice advantage plans
  • Personal Choice PPO tiered network plans
  • Group Medicare plans

Besides these, IBC also offers the following plans:

  • Pharmacy benefits
  • Dental benefits
  • Vision benefits
  • Stop loss
  • Spending accounts (HSA, HRA, FSA)
  • Labor benefits
  • Educational institutions benefits

Medicare Plans

Independence Blue Cross provides Medicare plans to its members at an affordable cost. These plans include Medicare Advantage plans and Medicare Supplement plans.

Medicare Advantage

Independence Blue Cross offers the following affordable Medicare Advantage health plans:

  • Personal Choice 65SM PPO
  • Keystone 65 HMO plans

Medicare Supplement

IBC offers Medicare Supplement or Medigap plans in Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, and Montgomery Counties. Their MedigapFreedom plans combine the benefits of Original Medicare and features of a Fee-for-Service health plan.

UnitedHealthcare

UnitedHealthcare offers a wide variety of health care plans for its members across the United Nations. With over 1.3 million physicians and health care professionals and 6,500 hospitals, they provide health care support. They offer insurance plans for individuals, families, employers, children, etc.

Medicare Insurance plans

UnitedHealthcare offers Medicare insurance plans to people 65 years or older. They may qualify if they have a disability or special condition. With the UnitedHealthcare Medicare plan, you can get medical coverage, prescription drugs, and other benefits like dental and vision. These are the plans that you will get from Medicare by UnitedHealthcare –

  • Original Medicare (Parts A & B)
  • Medicare Advantage Plans (Part C)
  • Dual Special Needs Plan (D-SNP)
  • Medicare Supplement Insurance Plan
  • Medicare Prescription Drug Plans (Part D)

Individual and Family Insurance plans

UnitedHealthcare offers various health insurance plans for individuals and families. Some insurance plans can last for up to 3 years, whereas you can choose short-term plans that last for a month. There are also plans for people who suffer from critical medical conditions. The following are the individual and family insurance plans provided by UHC:

  • TriTerm Medical
  • Short-term Insurance
  • Dental
  • Vision
  • Critical Illness Insurance
  • Hospital and doctor fixed Indemnity Insurance

Employers Insurance Plans

When you choose effective and sustainable health insurance coverage for your business, it helps build a solid foundation to balance employee health costs. UnitedHealthcare offers a wide range of group health insurance plans for both large and small businesses.

Small Business

Small businesses are those that consist of up to 100 employees. UnitedHealthcare offers the following insurance plans for small business employees:

  • Consumer-driven health plans
  • Primary care centered plans
  • Tiered benefit plans
  • Defined contribution plans

Midsize Business

UnitedHealthcare offers various plans for midsize businesses that consist of 101-2,999 employees. These are –

  • Medical insurance
  • Dental
  • Vision
  • Supplemental health plans
  • Pharmacy
  • COBRA
  • Flexible spending accounts
  • Medicare Part D Creditable Coverage

National Accounts or Large Business

UnitedHealthcare provides services to more than 400 companies that have over 3,000 employees. Their plans include the following products –

  • Medical solutions
  • Consumer-driven health plans
  • Health, wellness, and behavioral health solutions
  • Pharmacy benefits management
  • Ancillary and specialty benefits
  • Retiree solutions

Independence Blue Cross and UnitedHealthcare offer a variety of health insurance plans at an affordable price. IBC serves only in Pennsylvania and its surrounding counties, whereas UnitedHealthcare serves throughout the nation. For more information, you can visit www.uhc.com and www.ibx.com.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What kind of Medicare Advantage plans does UnitedHealthcare offer?

UnitedHealthcare offers the following Medicare Advantage plans to its members –

  • Exclusive Provider Organisation (EPO)
  • Preferred Provider Organisation (PPO)
  • Health Maintenance Organisation (HMO)
  • Private Fee-for-Service (PFFO) / Point-of-Service (POS)
  1. What is Independence’s personal choice?

Independence Blue Cross offers Personal Choice PPO plans that let you choose to see any doctor or visit any hospital in the Personal Choice network. If you choose doctors and hospitals within the Personal Choice network, you will pay less. On the other hand, you will pay more if you see doctors and hospitals out-of-network.

You may also like: