Which health insurance company is the best option for you and your family? Compare Blue Cross Blue Shield and WellCare side by side.
SmartFinancial Offers Unbiased, Fact-based Information. Our fact-checked articles are intended to educate insurance shoppers so they can make the right buying decisions. Learn More
Blue Cross was formed in 1929 as a partnership between Baylor University Hospital and its patients who were struggling financially. The administrators of the hospital wanted to make healthcare more affordable for some patients, many of whom were Dallas public school educators on restricted budgets. The initial payment plan set up by Baylor University Hospital consisted of a 50-cent prepay each month for up to 21 days of hospitalization per year. The success of the program lead to enrollment by employees in other professions across Dallas.
In 1985, Wellcare began as a Medicaid provider for the state of Florida, with operations in Tampa, Florida. After the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 was passed, WellCare began offering Medicare Part C, now called Medicare Advantage. In 2003, it offered Medicare Advantage plans with prescription drug coverage. In 2004, Wellcare went public. In November 2013, WellCare appointed Chairman David Gallitano to serve as interim CEO. He increased spending on technology and famously dorned the walls with photographs and portraits of health plan members, including people who suffer from chronic conditions like cancer, homelessness and hunger. In 2014, WellCare hired Kenneth Burdick as the new CEO and board member. He’d originally joined the company as the president of national health plans but was promoted first to president and COO and eventually CEO. In September 2017, Wellcare announced a rebrand with a focus on holistic health: “Beyond Healthcare: A Better You.” In October 2017, Wellcare announced the UNC Health Alliance primary care physicians and specialists into its Medicare Advantage network. Wellcare operates in 20 states and was recognized by Fortune magazine as One of the World’s Most Admired Companies in January 2018. In January 2020, Wellcare was acquired by Centene Corporation.
To learn more about each company, you can check out the Blue Cross Blue Shield Overview and WellCare Overview.
Which health insurance company is better? We've made it easy to compare companies side by side. See how Blue Cross Blue Shield and WellCare ranked among the industry ratings.
|Comparison||Blue Cross Blue Shield||WellCare|
|Medicare Star Rating||3.57 stars (out of 5)|
|Market Share Percentage||14.1%|
Each state has its own Blue Cross Blue Shield app on iTunes and GooglePlay. The app allows users to find doctors, hospitals, and pharmacies, view claims, pay bill, and manage prescriptions.
The MyWellCare app allows you to keep track of your benefits, look for providers, and use it as a digital ID Card.
|Blue Cross Blue Shield Mobile App|
|Blue Cross Blue Shield mobile app varies by State.|
|WellCare Mobile App|
Blue Cross Blue Shield
Blue Cross Blue Shield is available through participating employers for group insurance. You can also buy an individual or family plan directly from Blue Cross Blue Shield, the health insurance marketplace or you can get several free quotes here.
You can also contact 888.630.2583 to learn more about Blue Cross Blue Shield options for individuals and families or find a local BCBS company by visiting here.
You can get several free health insurance quotes here. For Wellcare enrollment forms visit here.
Blue Cross Blue Shield
If you use a network doctor or hospital, your claims will be submitted by that provider. If you see an out-of-network provider, you need to submit the claim yourself. You must submit a completed claim form or alternative documentation via fax or mailing address. As an alternative to sending a claim form, supply a description of services, a bill of charges from the provider and any medical documents you received from your provider.
For medical and/or dental services in the U.S. Puerto Rico or the U.S Virgin islands, Use these claim forms. For anywhere else or on a cruise ship outside the U.S. use the Blue Cross Blue Shield Global Core international claim forms. For prescriptions inside or outside the U.S. or U.S. territories: Use these claim forms.
Your doctor or care provider should submit a claim to the insurer. You should be covered except for copay. Your insurer will send you an explanation of benefits. If you owe anything, your doctor will send you a bill. If you visit an out-of-network provider, you will not be covered unless it was an emergency. Call 855-672-2755 with any additional questions.
Blue Cross Blue Shield
When your deductible, coinsurance and copays reach the individual maximum, the plan pays 100 percent of the allowed amount for that person.
To cancel your Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance, speak with an agent or call.
A flexible spending account is a way to set aside money for medical, dental and vision expenses or dependent care. You accumulate money in your account through pre-tax deductions from your paycheck. Your employer owns the account and may contribute to it as well as yourself, but decide how to spend the funds.
You can receive up to 25% off laser vision surgery if you have a Blue Cross Blue Shield vision plan. You can also use a flexible spending account (FSA) or health savings account (HSA) to pay for the vision correction procedure.
WellCare provides managed care services through Medicaid, Medicare Advantage and Medicare Prescription Drug plans.
WellCare received 3.57 stars out of 5 by Medicare’s rating system. It has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB).
Wellcare has a network of providers. To find a WellCare provider or to see if your doctor accepts Wellcare, visit here.
Centene acquired Wellcare in January 2020.
|Blue Cross Blue Shield Contact Info|
|Address||225 North Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60601|
|Phone||1 (888) 630 - 2583|
|WellCare Contact Info|
|Address||P.O. Box 31370|
|Phone||1 (800) 960-2530|
Answer a few questions and let Penny find the best rates in your area.