Cheapest Health Insurance in Michigan (2024 Plans)
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Health insurance premiums and out-of-pocket costs in Michigan differ by metal tier. Oscar provides the most affordable Catastrophic plan; Blue Cross Blue Shield offers competitive Bronze and Silver options; Molina leads with the lowest Gold tier cost.
If you want to balance monthly premiums with quality claims and coverage, MoneyGeek analyzed the best health insurance in Michigan.
Most Affordable Health Insurance in Michigan
Cheapest Health Insurance in Michigan by Metal Tier
The Blue Cross® Local HMO Silver Saver plan from Blue Cross Blue Shield emerges as the most economical option in the popular Silver tier for Michigan residents, featuring a monthly cost of $360. Silver plans are the most common choice, given their balance of monthly premiums and coverage benefits. For those who prefer lower monthly rates, Bronze plans offer an alternative, albeit at the risk of higher out-of-pocket expenses.
Health insurance premiums vary depending on the plan's metal tier, with each tier representing a trade-off between higher monthly payments and lower out-of-pocket costs, such as deductibles and copayments.
Here are the most affordable health insurance plans from each metal tier:
- Catastrophic: Secure ($193 per month) - The rate is for a 26-year-old buyer since these plans are available only to individuals under 30 or with a qualifying medical exemption.
- Bronze: Blue Cross® Local HMO Bronze Secure ($261 per month)
- Expanded Bronze: MyPriority Value Bronze Southeast Michigan Network ($285 per month)
- Silver: Blue Cross® Local HMO Silver Saver ($360 per month)
- Gold: Gold 1 ($371 per month)
To explore more options for cheap health insurance, consider the trade-offs in coverage and cost to find the plan that best suits your financial situation and health care needs.
In the Michigan health insurance marketplace, consumers can choose from various metal tiers, including Bronze, Expanded Bronze, Silver, Gold and Catastrophic plans. Each metal represents a different balance between monthly premiums and out-of-pocket expenses.
Bronze plans, like the Blue Cross® Local HMO Bronze Secure, typically have the lowest monthly premiums but the highest out-of-pocket costs. This means that while your monthly expense is lower, you will pay more when you need medical care. On the other hand, a Gold plan, such as Gold 1 from Molina, has a higher monthly cost at $371; it offers lower out-of-pocket expenses with a maximum of $8100, providing more comprehensive coverage and, thus, greater peace of mind for many.
For those earning below 250% of the Federal Poverty Level, cost sharing reductions are available on Silver plans. These subsidies lower the amount you pay when receiving medical care, making it more affordable to access health services. For instance, though the Blue Cross® Local HMO Silver Saver plan has a $360 monthly premium, with cost sharing reductions, eligible individuals can considerably reduce their deductibles, copayments and co-insurance. This support can make a Silver plan more valuable than a Bronze plan for low-income individuals, offering both affordability and better coverage.
Cheapest Silver Plans in Michigan
The most cost-effective Silver plan in Michigan is the Blue Cross® Local HMO Silver Saver offered by Blue Cross Blue Shield, with a monthly cost of $360.
The three most affordable Silver health plans available in Michigan are:
- Blue Cross® Local HMO Silver Saver from Blue Cross Blue Shield ($360 per month)
- MyPriority Premier Silver Southeast Michigan Network from PriorityHealth ($365 per month)
- Silver 12 with First 4 Primary Care Visits Free from Molina ($371 per month)
Silver plans are ideal for individuals who expect moderate health care usage. They balance monthly premiums and out-of-pocket costs when you use health care services. Customers with lower incomes may qualify for cost sharing reductions, which can substantially decrease the amount you pay for deductibles, copayments and co-insurance, making health care expenses more manageable.
Cheapest Gold Plans in Michigan
The most affordable Gold-tier plan available in Michigan is the Gold 1 offered by Molina, with a monthly cost of $371.
When considering the top three most affordable Gold plans in Michigan, the options are:
- Gold 1 from Molina ($371 per month)
- Gold 1 with Adult Vision Services from Molina ($375 per month)
- Gold 8 from Molina ($385 per month)
Gold plans are especially suitable for individuals who expect a lot of medical visits or require regular prescriptions, as these plans typically offer lower out-of-pocket costs when accessing health care services. They are ideal for those who are willing to pay higher monthly premiums to ensure lower costs when receiving care. Gold plans can be a smart choice if you prioritize having predictable expenses and peace of mind for your health care needs.
Cheapest Bronze Plans in Michigan
The most affordable Bronze plan in Michigan is the Blue Cross® Local HMO Bronze Secure from Blue Cross Blue Shield at $261 per month.
The three most cost-effective Bronze plans in Michigan are:
- Blue Cross® Local HMO Bronze Secure from Blue Cross Blue Shield ($261 per month)
- Bronze Simple 2 from Oscar ($275 per month)
- Blue Cross® Select HMO Bronze Secure from Blue Cross Blue Shield ($325 per month)
Bronze plans are ideal for individuals who want lower monthly premiums and can manage higher out-of-pocket costs if they require significant health care. They are a suitable choice for those who are in good health and typically don't need more than preventive care. These plans offer essential coverage and protect against very high medical expenses, making them a solid option if you are looking to balance affordability with the security of health coverage.
Cheapest Expanded Bronze Plans in Michigan
The most affordable option in Michigan's Expanded Bronze tier is the MyPriority Value Bronze Southeast Michigan Network from PriorityHealth, costing just $285 per month.
Introducing the three most cost-effective Expanded Bronze plans available in Michigan:
- MyPriority Value Bronze Southeast Michigan Network from PriorityHealth ($285 per month)
- MyPriority Standard Bronze - Southeast Michigan Network from PriorityHealth ($289 per month)
- Blue Cross® Local HMO Bronze Extra from Blue Cross Blue Shield ($294 per month)
Expanded Bronze plans are designed for customers seeking plans with lower monthly premiums while accepting higher out-of-pocket expenses when accessing health care services. These plans are a good fit for individuals who are relatively healthy and don't anticipate needing frequent medical care. They offer a balance between affordable monthly costs and financial protection against unexpected health issues, providing essential health benefits with a safety net in place.
Cheapest Catastrophic Plans in Michigan
The most affordable Catastrophic plan in Michigan is the Secure plan offered by Oscar at a monthly cost of $193.
The following are the three most affordable Catastrophic health plans in Michigan:
- Secure from Oscar ($193 per month)
- Physicians Health Plan HMO Catastrophic from Physicians Health Plan ($226 per month)
- Blue Cross® Select HMO Value from Blue Cross Blue Shield ($237 per month)
Expanded Bronze plans are designed for customers who want a balance between monthly premiums and out-of-pocket costs when accessing health care services. They provide a slightly higher level of coverage than minimum coverage plans, often covering a range of services before you meet the deductible. These plans can be a good option for individuals who expect to need moderate health care services and prefer to pay slightly more monthly to reduce costs at the time of service.
Cheapest Health Insurance in Michigan for Those With Low Income
Individuals in Michigan earning 250% below the Federal Poverty Level are eligible for cost-sharing reductions on Silver plans, which can significantly lower deductibles and out-of-pocket expenses.
The Blue Cross® Local HMO Silver Saver from Blue Cross Blue Shield is the most affordable Silver plan for those earning between $14,580 and $21,870 per year, with a Maximum Out of Pocket Cost (MOOP) of $700.
The most affordable Silver plans and their maximum out-of-pocket costs are:
- Blue Cross® Local HMO Silver Saver from Blue Cross Blue Shield (Monthly Cost: $360, Maximum Out-of-Pocket: $700)
- MyPriority Premier Silver Southeast Michigan Network from PriorityHealth (Monthly Cost: $365, Maximum Out-of-Pocket: $975)
To access cost-sharing reductions in Michigan, purchasing a Silver plan is the only option. The income figures given are for a single individual and will vary based on the size of the household.
Cost-sharing reductions (CSRs) are discounts that lower the amount you pay for deductibles, copayments and co-insurance on Silver health insurance plans. Individuals earning between 100% and 250% of the Federal Poverty Level may qualify. For instance, on the Blue Cross Local HMO Silver Saver plan, without CSRs, the maximum out-of-pocket cost is $7,050. However, with a 94% AV Level Silver Plan CSR, that max out-of-pocket drops significantly to just $700.
Cheapest Health Insurance in Michigan by Plan Type
In Michigan, the Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) is the most popular plan type. The most affordable health plan in Michigan for HMO is the Blue Cross® Local HMO Silver Saver from Blue Cross Blue Shield, costing $360 per month.
- HMO: Blue Cross® Local HMO Silver Saver from Blue Cross Blue Shield ($360 per month)
- EPO: Silver Simple PCP Saver from Oscar ($381 per month)
- PPO: Blue Cross® Premier PPO Silver from Blue Cross Blue Shield ($571 per month)
Aside from HMOs, Michigan residents have access to Exclusive Provider Organization (EPO) and Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) plans. EPO plans offer a balance between cost and flexibility, requiring patients to stay within a network without needing referrals. PPO plans provide greater flexibility in selecting health care providers, allowing for out-of-network services at higher costs.
In Michigan, the most common type of health insurance plan is the Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) plan. Besides HMOs, residents of Michigan can also choose from Exclusive Provider Organization (EPO) plans and Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) plans.
Here are the differences between these three types of plans:
Health Maintenance Organization (HMO):
- Pros: HMOs generally offer lower premiums and out-of-pocket costs. They require you to choose a primary care physician (PCP) who coordinates all of your health care services, which can ensure more organized care.
- Cons: You have limited freedom to see specialists or out-of-network providers without referrals from your PCP, which can be inconvenient if you need specialized care that your PCP cannot provide.
Exclusive Provider Organization (EPO):
- Pros: EPO plans offer a middle ground between HMO and PPO plans. They usually allow you to see specialists without a referral and provide a local network of doctors and hospitals from which you can choose.
- Cons: You get no coverage for out-of-network care except in emergencies, so you need to make sure that you are comfortable with the network of providers.
Preferred Provider Organization (PPO):
- Pros: PPOs offer more freedom to see any doctor or specialist without needing a referral, including out-of-network providers, which provides great flexibility in choosing health care services.
- Cons: This type of plan typically comes with higher premiums and possibly higher out-of-pocket costs. Also, using out-of-network providers will usually result in higher expenses compared to using those within the network.
Each of these plans has unique features that cater to different health care needs and preferences. When choosing a plan, individuals should consider factors such as cost, flexibility and the need for specialized care.
Cheapest Health Insurance in Michigan by County
Health insurance rates and availability of certain plans vary by county.
Comparing the most affordable plans in the largest and smallest counties by population shows this variation:
- Wayne: Clear Silver from Ambetter ($322 per month)
- Keweenaw: Blue Cross® Preferred HMO Silver Saver from Blue Cross Blue Shield ($594 per month)
The following table shows all available plans in each county in Michigan.
Health Insurance Costs in Michigan by Age and Metal Tier
In Michigan, health insurance rates change with age. An 18-year-old with a Silver plan pays $351 a month, but a 60-year-old pays $1,044 for the same type of plan. That's a difference of $693. Age makes it more expensive for older people.
Metal tiers also show different costs for health plans. A 40-year-old with a Bronze plan pays $341 each month. The same person with a Gold plan pays $572. That means the Gold plan costs $231 more and provides better coverage.
What to Know About Health Insurance in Michigan
MoneyGeek broke down all the health insurance options in Michigan, showing both private insurance in the marketplace with its different metal tiers and government programs like Medicaid and Medicare. We present this information clearly so users can understand their choices. We aim to guide you as you make important decisions about your health care. We believe that with the right knowledge, everyone can find the best insurance for their needs.
Private Health Insurance in the Michigan Marketplace
In Michigan, the open enrollment period for private health insurance typically runs from November 1 to December 15 annually. During this time, residents can shop for, compare and purchase health insurance plans through the Health Insurance Marketplace. If you miss the deadline to enroll or make changes to your plan, you must wait until the next open enrollment unless you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period (SEP). SEPs can be triggered by specific life events such as getting married, having a baby or losing other health coverage, allowing you to enroll outside the standard period.
Medicaid in Michigan
Medicaid is a joint federal and state program that provides health care coverage to eligible low-income adults, children, pregnant women, elderly adults and people with disabilities. In Michigan, eligibility for Medicaid depends on factors such as income level, family size and special conditions like pregnancy or disability. The program aims to assist those who might otherwise be unable to afford health care services, thereby improving their access to medical treatments, preventive care and wellness programs. Individuals and families must fall at certain income thresholds, which are a percentage of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL), to qualify for this program.
Medicare in Michigan
Medicare is a federal health care program primarily for individuals aged 65 and over. It is also available to some younger people with disabilities and those with End-Stage Renal Disease. In Michigan, residents who meet these criteria are eligible. Medicare Part A covers hospital insurance, including inpatient care and skilled nursing facilities. Part B provides medical insurance for doctor visits, outpatient care and some preventative services. Part C, also known as Medicare Advantage, bundles A and B benefits, often includes Part D (prescription drug coverage) and may offer additional services like dental and vision care. Part D encompasses prescription drug plans, which are optional and offered by private insurers.
Professional Insights on Affordable Health Insurance In Michigan
- What factors should individuals and families in Michigan consider when selecting a plan with the lowest out-of-pocket maxes?
- Are Health Savings Accounts (HSA) a viable option for those looking for the cheapest coverage in Michigan?
- Are there any special considerations that should be taken into account when selecting a plan in Michigan for people with pre-existing conditions?
- In your view, what can be done to make health insurance more affordable in Michigan?
Advisor and Investment Research Analyst at Summit Financial Consulting
Michigan Health Insurance FAQ
When looking for health insurance, you may have questions about cost and availability. MoneyGeek responded to frequently asked questions about cheap private health insurance in Michigan to help you learn more.
About Mark Fitzpatrick