Top Obamacare Insurance Companies

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You'll find some of the biggest health insurance companies in the U.S. on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) Marketplace. Also known as "Obamacare," there is an ACA Marketplace for every state, with insurance options for you to browse.

Here are five of the top Obamacare insurance companies you'll find.

Key Takeaways

  • Major Obamacare insurance companies include UnitedHealthcare, Cigna, Centene, Anthem, and Molina.
  • These companies are some of the largest in the U.S., with millions of covered members and dozens of states served.
  • None of these companies operates Marketplace plans in all 50 states, so your options will depend on where you live.
  • You can search your state's Marketplace to find the insurer and plan tier that works for your budget.

What Marketplace Plans Cover

The Affordable Care Act operates through health exchanges nationwide, designed to make health care coverage accessible to all Americans. You can shop for insurance plans on these exchanges.

These companies offer tiered Marketplace plans, which let you choose how much you pay in premiums.

Note

In general, higher-tier plans come with more expensive premiums but reduce your out-of-pocket expenses, while lower tier plans have higher out-of-pocket expenses but lower premiums.

All Marketplace exchange plans are mandated by law to cover these 10 essential services:

  • Emergency services
  • Outpatient/ambulatory services
  • Preventive/wellness services
  • Maternity and newborn care
  • Pediatric services
  • Hospitalization
  • Therapy services
  • Prescription drugs
  • Laboratory services
  • Mental health and substance abuse services

If you have to see a specialist, plans will pay some or all costs, depending on your plan, but you must have a referral from your primary care physician. You may be eligible to have a subsidy pay part of your Marketplace plan premium, depending on your household size and income.

UnitedHealthcare

UnitedHealthcare is the largest health insurance provider in the U.S., and you'll find them on the ACA Marketplace, too. The company offers three tiers of service to Marketplace shoppers:

  • Bronze: The plan pays 60% and you pay 40%.
  • Silver: The plan pays 70% and you pay 30%.
  • Gold: The plan pays 80% and you pay 20%.

UnitedHealthcare does not offer a Platinum plan in the Marketplace.

You can find UnitedHealthcare plans in Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and Washington.

Cigna

Cigna participates in the Obamacare exchange in 16 states: Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Illinois, Kansas, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and Virginia. The company offers four plans through the health insurance Marketplace:

  • Bronze: The bronze plan pays 60%, and you pay 40%. This is the least expensive plan.
  • Silver: The silver plan pays 70%, and you pay 30%. This is a medium-priced plan.
  • Gold: The gold plan pays 80%, and you pay 20%. This is a high-priced plan.
  • Platinum: The platinum plan pays 90%, and you pay 10%. This is the highest-priced plan.

Co-pays and deductibles will vary based on your plan, your state of residence, and the medical services provided. The Cigna summary of benefits and coverage details specific benefits, co-pays, and deductibles for each plan in each state in the Cigna health care exchange.

Centene (Ambetter)

Centene is a publicly traded insurer. It expanded its participation in the Obamacare health care exchange in 2018. Ambetter is Centene’s health insurance marketplace (HIM) product and operates in 26 states: Arizona, Arkansas, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Washington.

Ambetter offers a variety of plans under three different tiers:

  • Ambetter Essential Care (Bronze): This plan offers lower monthly premiums with higher out-of-pocket costs.
  • Ambetter Balanced Care (Silver): The balanced care plan is ideal for those who may be eligible for government assistance through subsidy payments. It balances premium payments of out-of-pocket expenses.
  • Ambetter Secure Care (Gold): The gold plan has the highest monthly premium but has the lowest out-of-pocket expenses.

All essential health benefits are covered by each plan. Some plans also cover vision and dental care. Specific information about premiums, deductibles, and co-payments, along with the details of each plan available in each state, can be found by selecting your state on the Ambetter website.

Anthem

Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield participates in Obamacare exchanges in 12 states: Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, Ohio, Virginia, and Wisconsin. However, coverage is only partial in Missouri (it excludes 30 counties in the Kansas City area) and Virginia (it excludes the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C.).

Anthem health care exchange plan are offered in these four categories:

  • Bronze: The plan pays 60% and you pay 40%.
  • Silver: The plan pays 70% and you pay 30%.
  • Gold: The plan pays 80% and you pay 20%.
  • Platinum: The plan pays 90% and you pay 10%.

Plan options, deductible, and co-pay amounts will vary by plan category and state. You can shop for individual and family plans on the Anthem website by entering your ZIP code.

Molina Healthcare

Molina Healthcare operates in the health care Marketplace in 14 states: California, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, New Mexico, Ohio, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, Washington, and Wisconsin. It offers the following types of plans through the health care exchange:

  • Molina Bronze Plans: Lower-cost plans, free preventive care, and higher out-of-pocket costs
  • Molina Silver Plans: Affordable plans with the lowest costs for doctor visits and urgent care
  • Molina Gold Plans: Plans with lower costs for things like doctor visits and out-of-pocket costs but generally higher premiums

Specific plan deductibles and co-pays vary by plan and state. For specific plan information, you can view all of Molina's health insurance exchange plans.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do you cancel Marketplace insurance?

You can cancel your Marketplace insurance plan online. Your insurance may be canceled immediately, so think about whether you're truly ready to cancel your insurance before you start the process. If it isn't a special enrollment period, and you don't have a qualifying life event, then you may be unable to acquire new health insurance after canceling your current plan.

What is the income limit for Marketplace insurance?

You can buy health insurance from the Marketplace no matter your income level. The only difference for higher-income individuals is that you won't receive tax credits to help you afford your health insurance premiums. The exact income level that disqualifies you from tax credits depends on where you live and the number of people in your household. There are online resources to help you determine whether you will save money through Marketplace insurance.

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Sources
The Balance uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. American Medical Association. "Competition in Health Insurance: A Comprehensive Study of U.S. Markets," Page 11.

  2. United Healthcare. "Plan Coverage and Metal Levels - Chapter 4, 2022 UnitedHealthcare Administrative Guide."

  3. UnitedHealthcare. "2022 UnitedHealthcare Individual Exchange plans."

  4. Cigna. "Cigna Grows ACA Marketplace Presence, Giving More Customers and Communities Access to Quality, Cost-Effective Care."

  5. Cigna. "Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum Health Plans."

  6. Ambetter Health. "Select Your State."

  7. Ambetter Health. "Low-Cost Healthcare."

  8. Anthem. "About Anthem."

  9. Anthem. "Open Enrollment for Health Insurance."

  10. Molina Healthcare. "View Plans."

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