Cigna vs. Kaiser Permanente: Medicare Advantage Comparison

Kaiser Permanente’s overall star ratings are higher, but Cigna gets better scores for member experience.
Kate Ashford, CSA®
By Kate Ashford, CSA® 
Updated
Edited by Holly Carey

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Cigna Medicare Advantage offers plans in 29 states and Washington, D.C., and the company’s member experience ratings, including metrics like care coordination and customer service, are above average for major providers. Cigna’s average star ratings from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) are lower than Kaiser’s ratings, but neither provider beats the industry average.

Kaiser Permanente Medicare Advantage plans are available in only eight states and Washington, D.C., and Kaiser’s member experience scores from CMS fall below those of other major providers. Kaiser Permanente also offers 4-star plans in only three states.

Here’s a look at how Cigna and Kaiser Permanente compare.

Cigna Medicare Advantage

Cigna Medicare Advantage

Cigna

3.76

CMS Star Rating

Cigna plans are low-cost and member experience scores are higher than average, but star ratings from the CMS have declined.

M-F 9am-9pm ET, Sa 10am-9pm ET

Speak to a licensed insurance agent on askchapter.org

GET A QUOTE

from askchapter.org

States available

29 states and Washington, D.C.


Members in high-rated plans

Medium (50% to 89%)


Member experience

3.49 (Above average)


States available

29 states and Washington, D.C.


Members in high-rated plans

Medium (50% to 89%)


Member experience

3.49 (Above average)


Pros

  • More than 8 in 10 Cigna plans are $0-premium plans.
  • Offers a range of member benefits, such as 24/7 telehealth, meal delivery and transportation to and from health facilities.

Cons

  • Below-average star ratings.
  • Available in only 29 states and Washington, D.C.
  • The National Committee for Quality Assurance gives all Cigna plans a score of 3.5 stars or lower on their 5-point scale.

Other factors to consider

Provider size

7th-largest provider of Medicare Advantage plans.

Medicare Advantage enrollment

More than 570,000.

Percent of plans rated 4 stars or higher

46%.

Percent of plans with $0 premium

83%.

Plans available

HMO, HMO-POS, PPO, SNP.

Kaiser Permanente Medicare Advantage

Kaiser Permanente Medicare Advantage

Kaiser Permanente

3.94

CMS Star Rating

Kaiser Permanente plans get average star ratings — lower than last year — and the provider sells plans in only eight states and Washington, D.C.

M-F 9am-9pm ET, Sa 10am-9pm ET

Speak to a licensed insurance agent on askchapter.org

GET A QUOTE

from askchapter.org

States available

8 states and Washington, D.C.


Members in high-rated plans

Medium (50% to 89%)


Member experience

2.44 (Below average)


States available

8 states and Washington, D.C.


Members in high-rated plans

Medium (50% to 89%)


Member experience

2.44 (Below average)


Pros

  • Earns above-average customer satisfaction scores in California, one of the major Medicare markets studied by J.D. Power.
  • Eight in 10 members are in a highly-rated plan.
  • Most plans include drug coverage.

Cons

  • Available in only eight states and Washington, D.C.
  • Offers mostly HMO plans, so most members must work within Kaiser’s network of medical providers.
  • Member experience ratings overall are below average.

Other factors to consider

Provider size

5th-largest provider of Medicare Advantage plans.

Medicare Advantage enrollment

1.8 million.

Percent of plans rated 4 stars or higher

33%.

Percent of plans with $0 premium

51%.

Plans available

HMO, HMO-POS, PPO, SNP.

Find the right Medicare Advantage plan

It’s important to do your research before selecting a Medicare Advantage plan for yourself. Here are some questions to consider asking:

  • What are the plan’s costs? Do you understand what the plan’s premium, deductibles, copays and/or coinsurance will be? Can you afford them?

  • Is your doctor in-network? If you have a preferred medical provider or providers, make sure they participate in the plan’s network.

  • Are your prescriptions covered? If you’re on medication, it’s crucial to understand how the plan covers it. What tier are your prescription drugs on, and are there any coverage rules that apply to them?

  • Is there dental coverage? Does the plan offer routine coverage for vision, dental and hearing needs?

  • Are there extras? Does the plan offer any extra benefits, such as fitness memberships, transportation benefits or meal delivery?

If you have additional questions about Medicare, visit Medicare.gov or call 800-MEDICARE (800-633-4227, TTY 877-486-2048).

Still deciding on the right carrier? Compare Medicare Advantage plans

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