How to Find the Best Illinois Medicare Advantage Plans

The best Medicare Advantage plans in Illinois provide coverage that meets your needs and stays within your financial constraints. According to MoneyGeek's analysis, Aetna Medicare Value is the state's best PPO plan, while Humana Gold Plus H1468-013 is the best HMO plan in the state.

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Last Updated: 9/23/2022
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Using the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services's (CMS) five-star quality rating system, MoneyGeek identified the highest-rated and most widely available plans in Illinois. We rated the best Medicare Advantage plans in Illinois based on plan type, drug coverage requirements and low out-of-pocket expenses.

MoneyGeek's recommendations are based on aggregated data. Always check to see if your preferred hospitals and medical providers are covered by your chosen Medicare Advantage plan and compare prices to find your ideal provider.

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 Illinois.

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Best Medicare Advantage Plans in Illinois

Best Medicare Advantage Plan in Illinois - Overall

The best Medicare Advantage Plan will be different for each person, due to their specific needs and requirements. When it comes to PPO plans in Illinois, the Aetna Medicare Value (PPO) plan offered by Aetna Medicare comes out on top, according to MoneyGeek's study. It offers drug coverage, the six core benefits and a high star rating from CMS.

As the second-most common type of health insurance in the state, PPO plans are more accessible and feature a wider network. With a PPO plan, you don't need a referral to see an in-network or out-of-network doctor or specialist. These plans are typically more expensive, however, due to their added flexibility.

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MoneyGeek Top Pick
Aetna Medicare

According to MoneyGeek, Aetna Medicare Value (PPO) is Illinois' best PPO plan. However, your ideal plan depends on your specific circumstances. Highlights of this plan include:

  • No monthly premium
  • Drug coverage with no deductible
  • In-network maximum out-of-pocket payment of $3,900
  • CMS star rating of 4.5 out of five

Aetna Medicare Value (PPO) includes the most commonly purchased supplemental benefits, such as vision, dental, hearing, fitness, worldwide emergency and telehealth. The plan received a high rating from CMS and covers Part D prescription drug coverage. Its worldwide emergency coverage makes the plan an excellent choice for frequent travelers.

However, Aetna Medicare Value (PPO) may not be the best plan for all. Always prioritize your personal circumstances when selecting a health insurance plan.

Best HMO Medicare Advantage Plan in Illinois

Average shoppers living in Illinois seeking plans with drug coverage, the six core benefits and a high CMS star rating can look to Humana's Humana Gold Plus H1468-013 (HMO) for the best policy.

Although they are generally cheaper, HMO plans only cover services from in-network hospitals and doctors. Your primary care physician can refer you to a specialist in the network as necessary. In the event of an emergency, out-of-network services are covered by these policies. Individuals who require affordable insurance and have easy access to in-network providers can benefit the most from this option.

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MoneyGeek Top Pick
Humana

Illinois residents can get the best deal possible with Humana Gold Plus H1468-013 (HMO). The plan features:

  • No monthly premium
  • Drug coverage with no deductible
  • An in-network max-out-of-pocket limit of $2,600
  • A high 4.5 star rating from CMS

Supplemental benefits, including vision, hearing, fitness, dental, worldwide emergency and telehealth, are included in the Humana Gold Plus H1468-013 (HMO) plan. Medically necessary transportation, Part D drug coverage and in-home services are also covered. CMS also gave the plan an excellent rating.

Best Medicare Advantage Plan in Illinois Without Drug Coverage

While choosing a Medicare Advantage plan, individuals who do not require Part D prescription drug coverage can consider several alternatives. Among Medicare Advantage plans in Illinois that do not include drug coverage, Humana's Humana Gold Plus H1468-013 (HMO) plan is the best option. It offers the six core benefits and has a high CMS star rating, making it one of the best Medicare Advantage plans in the state.

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MoneyGeek Top Pick
Humana

Regardless of whether Illinois residents require prescription coverage, MoneyGeek found Humana's Humana Gold Plus H1468-013 (HMO) to be the best alternative. Its primary features include:

  • No monthly premium
  • An in-network max-out-of-pocket limit of $2,600
  • A high rating of 4.5 out of 5 from CMS

The plan contains the most commonly used core benefits — vision, dental, fitness, hearing, telehealth and worldwide emergency — as well as coverage for medically essential transportation and in-home services. Additionally, it received a high rating from CMS.

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

Many Medicare Advantage plans come with little or no premiums, which can lead to significant out-of-pocket expenses. You can prevent these costs by selecting a health insurance plan with a low maximum out-of-pocket expenditure.

Aetna Medicare's Aetna Medicare Value (PPO) offers the lowest maximum out-of-pocket expenses for Illinois residents. Additionally, the plan provides coverage for six core benefits and prescription drugs. CMS gave it a strong overall rating, as well.

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MoneyGeek Top Pick
Aetna Medicare

MoneyGeek also determined that Aetna Medicare Value (PPO) is the best option in Illinois for people seeking low-out-of-pocket cost plans with or without prescription coverage. The following features are included in the plan:

  • No monthly premium
  • An in-network max out-of-pocket limit of $3,900
  • A high CMS rating of 4.5 out of 5.

If you have health insurance with a low maximum out-of-pocket cost, you can avoid major medical expenses in the future, especially if your medical expenses are on the higher side. Aetna Medicare Value (PPO) plan begins to cover your in-network medical costs as soon as you reach the out-of-pocket limit of $3,900. In the event of out-of-network treatment, the maximum out-of-pocket expense is $5,151.

Medicare Advantage Plan in Illinois - Statistics

Medicare Advantage plans are available from 20 healthcare companies in Illinois. This section explores several crucial components. You can use the information to develop an understanding of coverage availability.

1

Medicare Advantage Plans in Illinois are a mix of Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) and Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) plans, with 74.9% offering drug coverage.

In Illinois, the vast majority of Medicare Advantage plans are HMOs. PPO plans account for approximately 30.1% of all policies. Of all the state's plans, 74.9% of policies cover prescription drugs.

2

In Illinois, 55% of Medicare Advantage Plans are premium-free.

There are 66 different plans with no premium in Illinois. This represents 55% of the market’s Medicare Advantage Plans. The remaining 45% include a monthly premium at an average cost of $70.90.

3

Hearing, vision and worldwide emergency benefits are included in the majority of Medicare Advantage plans in Illinois.

The three most frequently covered benefits by Medicare Advantage Plans in Illinois are hearing, vision and worldwide emergency. In the state, 99% of plans include a hearing benefit, while 96% include the other two. The most uncommon type of coverage is home safety devices and modifications. To find a plan with this coverage, you may need to shop around a bit more.

Expert Advice: Finding the Best Medicare Advantage Plan in Illinois

  1. 1. What types of Medicare Advantage Plans are offered in Illinois?
  2. 2. What is the best way to shop around for Medicare Advantage plans in Illinois?
  3. 3. What types of Medicare Advantage Plans are offered in Illinois?
  4. 4. What is the best way to shop around for Medicare Advantage plans in Illinois?
John D. Blum
John D. Blum

Professor of Law Emeritus at the School of Law, Loyola University Chicago

Methodology

MoneyGeek collected data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services 2022 MA Landscape Source Files released in October 2021. Plans in Illinois 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 Illinois 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.