Anthem Medicare Advantage Plans Review

Fact Checked
Medicare rating: 4 to 4.5 stars A.M. Best financial strength rating: A BBB rating: A+ NCQA rating: Not Rated Consumer Affairs rating: 3.9 J.D. Power ranking: 6th out of 10

Quick Anthem Medicare Advantage Plans review: Anthem offers competitive Medicare Advantage Plans in terms of features, affordability, and member satisfaction, although their geographic availability is limited.

Founded in 2004 and headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, Anthem is one of the largest providers of health insurance plans in the United States. It offers a range of Blue Cross Blue Shield Medicare Advantage Plans in 14 states. Prescription drug coverage is included in most plans, plus dental, vision, and hearing services and fitness memberships.

Since Anthem offers more types of Medicare products than its competitors, it can include additional services and benefits in its Medicare Advantage Plans and still keep fees low. Many plans have no premiums or deductibles, making them attractive for those eligible for Original Medicare.

It’s worth taking the time to compare plans to see which will provide the best fit for your health care needs and budget constraints.

Pros and Cons of Anthem Medicare Advantage Plans

What we like about Anthem Medicare Advantage plans: The drawbacks of Anthem Medicare Advantage plans:
  • Many affordable plans with extra benefits
  • Televisits covered, including 24/7 nursing and pharmacy support
  • Variety of HMO and PPO plans available

What Do Anthem Medicare Advantage Plans Cover?

Also called Medicare Part C, Medicare Advantage Plans combine Part A and B benefits with various extra services. Most Anthem Medicare Advantage Plans include:

  • Prescription drug coverage
  • Vision
  • Dental
  • Hearing
  • Wellness benefits, such as free gym memberships
  • Medical transportation (some plans)
  • Wellness over-the-counter medications (some plans)
  • Personal emergency response system

If you have certain chronic medical conditions, such as cancer or Alzheimer’s, you may qualify for a Medicare Advantage Special Needs Plan that serves a specific population group. With Medicare Advantage, you continue to pay your Original Medicare premiums. In many cases, there’s no additional cost.

Anthem Medicare Advantage Plan Options

Anthem offers one of the widest ranges of Medicare Advantage Plan options among insurance providers at low costs. These plans are structured as HMOs, PPOs, and SNPs.

In a Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) plan, you choose a primary care provider who coordinates care and provides referrals to specialists within the network. With Preferred Provider Organizations (PPOs), you also choose a primary care doctor, but appointments can be made directly with specialists, including those outside the network. This flexibility comes with higher fees.

Specific medical conditions or low income may qualify you for a Special Needs Plan (SNP). These plans provide targeted services and support tailored to the care needed.

In addition to standard benefits, Anthem’s plans also provide 24/7 telehealth services and caregiver resources. These Essential Extras vary between plans and may include fitness tracking, a personal home helper, transportation services, and meal delivery. More comprehensive extra benefits are available for an additional monthly premium.

Before making a decision, it’s helpful to compare some of the available Anthem Medicare Advantage Plans for 2023:

Plan name Monthly premium Annual deductible Office visits Annual maximum out-of-pocket costs
Anthem MediBlue Preferred (HMO) $0 $0 $0 PCP/$35 specialist In-network: $4,200 out-of-pocket limit
Anthem MediBlue Extra (HMO) $10.40 $0 $0 PCP/$40 specialist In-network: $7,550 out-of-pocket limit
Anthem MediBlue Access (PPO) $56 $1,000 for out-of-network Medicare-covered services In network $0 PCP/$40 specialist

Out of network $25 PCP/$60 specialist

In-network: $5,500 out-of-pocket limit

Combined In- and Out-of-network: $8,950 out-of-pocket limit

Anthem MediBlue Access Basic (Regional PPO) $78 $1,000 for out-of-network Medicare-covered services In network $10 PCP/$40 specialist

Out of network $40 PCP/$60 specialist

In-network $6000 out-of-pocket limit

Combined In- and Out-of-network: $10,000 out-of-pocket limit

Anthem MediBlue Dual Advantage (HMO D-SNP) $0 $0 $0 PCP/$0 specialist In network: $8,300 out-of-pocket limit

*Based on pricing in Columbus, Ohio in 2023

Anthem Medicare Advantage Plans Reviews and Ratings

While geographic availability is limited, approximately four out of five members of Anthem Medicare Advantage Plans report positive experiences.

Trusted ratings and reviews can help you understand how an insurer’s plans stack up against the competition. See how Medicare, A.M. Best, the Better Business Bureau and more rate Anthem’s Medicare Advantage Plans.

Medicare rating: 4 to 4.5 stars
Anthem’s Medicare Advantage Plans have an overall quality rating ranging from 4 to 4.5 stars from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Anthem’s PPO Plans have the highest rating of 4.5.
A.M. Best financial strength rating: A A.M. Best is a credit rating agency specializing in the insurance industry. In December 2020, A.M. Best affirmed its Financial Strength Rating of A (Excellent) for the core Blue Cross Blue Shield-branded insurance subsidiaries of Anthem, Inc. The Blue Cross Blue Shield-branded entities, also referred to as Anthem Health Group (Anthem Health), are part of the core subsidiaries of Anthem.

An A rating indicates stability to meet ongoing obligations.

BBB rating: A+
Anthem isn’t accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB), but it has an A+ rating with zero complaints.
NCQA rating: Not Rated
Anthem’s Medicare Advantage Plans aren’t rated by the National Committee for Quality Insurance (NCQA), a leading accreditation agency, making it difficult to draw comparisons about quality to others in their class.
Consumer Affairs rating: 3.9
Based on 1,426 ratings submitted to Consumer Affairs in the last year, Anthem is rated 3.9 out of 5 stars in overall satisfaction. Reviewers cite the ease with which they can access care, satisfaction with customer service, and the affordability of plans. Poor reviews were for lack of coverage for health conditions and medications
J.D. Power ranking: 6th out of 10
In its 2021 Medicare Advantage Study, J.D. Power measured Medicare Advantage Plan satisfaction based on coverage and benefits, provider choice, cost, customer service, information and communication, and billing and payment. Anthem scored 797 points out of 1,000, coming sixth out of the top 10 Medicare Advantage providers.
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Certified Senior Advisor (CSA)®

As a health care professional since 1987, Kelly Blackwell has walked alongside and cared for seniors as they journey through the season of their fourth quarter of life. Blackwell holds a Bachelor of Science in nursing from the University of Northern Colorado, a Master of Science in health care administration from Grand Canyon University, an interprofessional graduate certificate in palliative care from the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus and holds a Certified Senior Advisor® credential from the Society of Certified Senior Advisors.

Blackwell contributes to the University of Colorado-Anschutz blog and has been published in “The Human Touch” distributed by the University of Colorado Center for Bioethics and Humanities. She cowrote “Dying Is” for Pathways Hospice.

A registered nurse, Blackwell understands health insurance choices influence quality of life and are driven by values, goals, and beliefs. She’s passionate about engaging with, educating, and empowering seniors as they navigate the health care system. She’s equipped to lend an experienced, compassionate voice to beneficiaries seeking information about Medicare Advantage Plans.

As a CSA®, Blackwell has access to valuable resources for Medicare beneficiaries. Her work as a bedside nurse and clinical manager has given her the opportunity to see how Medicare rules, regulations, and benefits work when patients need them. With a passion to learn and to make a difference in the lives of seniors, Blackwell supports seniors through Medicare and fourth-quarter life decisions.

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