How to Find the Best Arkansas Medicare Advantage Plans

The best way to choose the right healthcare plan for you is to find one that offers the benefits and coverages that meet your needs. MoneyGeek analyzed the top-rated Medicare Advantage Plans in Arkansas that provide broad benefits and widespread availability. We found that the best HMO and PPO plans are Cigna Preferred Medicare and HumanaChoice H5216-231, respectively.

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Last Updated: 7/1/2022
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MoneyGeek found the most widely available plans in Arkansas by using the five-star quality rating system of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). We broke down the best plans in the state based on policy type, whether you need drug coverage and if you want to limit out-of-pocket costs.

Since these are general recommendations, it’s best to shop around to choose a plan that fits your needs and has hospitals and providers in its network that you want to use.

If you're not looking for a Medicare Advantage plan but want to cover out-of-pocket costs that your base Medicare plan doesn't cover, MoneyGeek also ranked the best Medicare Supplement Plans in Arkansas.

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Best Medicare Advantage Plans in Arkansas

Best Medicare Advantage Plan in Arkansas - Overall

The best Medicare Advantage Plan in Arkansas depends on your individual needs. If you’re looking for a PPO plan with drug coverage, six core benefits and a high CMS star rating, MoneyGeek found that the HumanaChoice H5216-231 plan offered by Humana is the best option.

There are many benefits of choosing a PPO plan. While it’s more expensive, it offers added flexibility and lets you choose any hospital or provider. You also don’t need a referral to see a specialist.

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MoneyGeek Top Pick
Humana

While MoneyGeek found HumanaChoice H5216-231 to be the best plan, the right option for you might be different depending on your needs.

With this plan, you’ll get:

  • No monthly premium
  • Drug coverage
  • An in-Network Max Out-of-Pocket limit of $4,200
  • Overall CMS star rating of 4 out of 5

The HumanaChoice H5216-231 plan offers all the six common benefits, including vision, dental, hearing, fitness, worldwide emergency and telehealth. This plan also offers Part D drug coverage and has a high CMS star rating.

Since the HumanaChoice H5216-231 plan offers worldwide emergency benefits, it’s a good option for travelers.

Best HMO Medicare Advantage Plan in Arkansas

In Arkansas, the best HMO Medicare Advantage Plan depends on your needs. MoneyGeek’s research shows that, for someone looking for an HMO plan with drug coverage, six core benefits and a high star rating from the CMS, the Cigna Preferred Medicare plan offered by Cigna could be the best option.

While an HMO plan is more affordable compared to other types of plans, it does not allow you to go outside of your network except in an emergency. It also requires a referral if you want to see a specialist.

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MoneyGeek Top Pick
Cigna Medicare

MoneyGeek found the Cigna Preferred Medicare plan to be the best HMO plan in Arkansas. However, the right option for you will depend on your needs.

Here are the details of this plan:

  • No monthly premium
  • Includes drug coverage
  • In-network max out-of-pocket limit of $6,700
  • Overall CMS star rating of 4.5 out of 5

With the Cigna Preferred Medicare plan, you get all common benefits like vision, dental, hearing, fitness, worldwide emergency and telehealth. It also offers Part D drug coverage and a high star rating from the CMS.

Best Medicare Advantage Plan in Arkansas Without Drug Coverage

MoneyGeek researched the best Medicare Advantage Plans in Arkansas for people who are not looking for Part D prescription drug coverage. If you’re looking for a Medicare Advantage Plan with or without drug coverage, six core benefits and a high star rating from the CMS, MoneyGeek found that the best option for you could be the Cigna Preferred Medicare plan offered by Cigna. Even if you are not looking for a plan with drug coverage, it might suit you well.

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MoneyGeek Top Pick
Cigna Medicare

Whether you are looking for drug coverage or not, MoneyGeek found the Cigna Preferred Medicare plan to be the best plan in Arkansas. This plan includes Part D drug coverage.

Here are the details of the Cigna Preferred Medicare plan:.

  • No monthly premium
  • Includes drug coverage
  • In-network max out-of-pocket limit of $6,700
  • Overall CMS star rating of 4.5 out of 5

The Cigna Preferred plan ranked high on CMS star rating system and includes all six common benefits like vision, dental, hearing, fitness, worldwide emergency and telehealth.

Best Medicare Advantage Plan in Arkansas for Low Max Out-of-Pocket Costs

While there are many health plans available that offer low to no premiums, you might have to pay a higher amount of money to cover out-of-pocket expenses if you choose these plans.

MoneyGeek’s research shows that the AARP Medicare Advantage Choice plan by UnitedHealthcare is the best option for people looking for a Medicare Advantage Plan with no premiums or a low in-network max out-of-pocket (MOOP), drug coverage, six core benefits and a high star rating from the CMS.

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MoneyGeek Top Pick
AARP

MoneyGeek found that the AARP Medicare Advantage Choice plan is the best plan for you if you need a plan with or without drug coverage. We found this plan by excluding other health plans with a high out-of-pocket maximum.

Here are the details of this plan:

  • No monthly premium
  • In-network max out-of-pocket limit of $5900
  • Overall CMS star rating of 4 out of 5

With a lower max out-of-pocket limit, you won’t have to pay high costs in case of high medical expenses in a year. If you have the AARP Medicare Advantage Choice plan, you will not pay more for in-network coverage after you spend $5,900. Since it’s a PPO plan, it will have a different max out-of-pocket limit for out-of-network coverage. The limit is $10,000 for this plan.

Medicare Advantage Plan in Arkansas - Statistics

In Arkansas, 10 healthcare organizations offer Medicare Advantage Plans. MoneyGeek researched the following statistics on Medicare Advantage in the state to help you understand the rare and common components of the plans.

1

Arkansas Medicare Advantage Plans are a mix of HMO, PPO, MSA and PFFS plans, with 75.6% offering drug coverage

MoneyGeek’s data shows that 41.1% of plans available in Arkansas are Health Maintenance Organization plans and 43.5% plans are Preferred Provider Organization plans. 7.9% are Private Fee-For-Service plans and 7.5% are Medical Savings Accounts plans. We also found that about 75.6% of the plans offer drug coverage.

2

53% of Medicare Advantage Plans in Arkansas have a $0 premium

In Arkansas, 25 health plans offer $0 premiums, which is roughly 53% of the plans available in the state. The average cost of plans that do charge premiums is $44.10.

3

Hearing, telehealth and worldwide emergency benefits are common in Arkansas, with most plans offering them

MoneyGeek discovered that hearing, telehealth and worldwide emergency benefits are most commonly offered in Arkansas. Transportation, in-home support and emergency device benefits are rarely offered.

Expert Advice: Finding the Best Medicare Advantage Plan in Arkansas

  1. 1. What types of Medicare Advantage Plans are offered in Arkansas?
  2. 2. What is the best way to shop around for Medicare Advantage plans in Arkansas?
  3. 3. What types of Medicare Advantage Plans are offered in Arkansas?
  4. 4. What is the best way to shop around for Medicare Advantage plans in Arkansas?
Dr. Amanda Carpenter
Dr. Amanda Carpenter

Assistant Professor, Co-Division Lead, CNBT Division of Medical Sciences and Public Health at Arkansas State University

Methodology

MoneyGeek collected data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services 2022 MA Landscape Source Files released in October 2021. Plans in Arkansas were filtered down to those that offer drug coverage (unless otherwise noted), offer six of the most common Medicare Advantage coverage benefits and are available to at least 50% of the population of Arkansas based on county availability.

About the Author


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Mark Fitzpatrick is a senior content manager with MoneyGeek specializing in insurance. Mark has years of experience analyzing the insurance market and creating original research and content. He graduated from Boston College with a Bachelor of Arts and Johns Hopkins University with a Master of Arts.