Which health insurance company is the best option for you and your family? Compare WellCare and Kaiser Permanente side by side.
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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.
After the war ended the shipyard workforce fell from 90,000 to 13,000. Only 12 of 75 medical group providers remained. On July 21, 1945, the Permanente Health Plan opened to the public to continue the health care delivery set up by Kaiser and Garfield. In 10 years, more than 300,000 people enrolled in Northern California with the support of two unions, the International Longshoremen’s and Warehousemen’s Union and the Retail Clerks Union.
In 1953, the name of the health plan and the hospitals was changed from Permanente to Kaiser Permanente. Even today, there are ties between the nonprofit Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals and the Permanente Medical Groups.
To learn more about each company, you can check out the WellCare Overview and Kaiser Permanente Overview.
Which health insurance company is better? We've made it easy to compare companies side by side. See how WellCare and Kaiser Permanente ranked among the industry ratings.
|Medicare Star Rating||3.57 stars (out of 5)||5 stars (out of 5)|
|NAIC Complaint Index||0.36% for group health|
The MyWellCare app allows you to keep track of your benefits, look for providers, and use it as a digital ID Card.
The Kaiser Permanente app allows users to find doctors, hospitals, and pharmacies, view claims, and pay your bill. They also offer an app called Humana Pharmacy which helps you to manage your prescriptions.
|WellCare Mobile App|
|Kaiser Permanente Mobile App|
You can get several free health insurance quotes with SmartFinancial. For Wellcare enrollment forms visit here.
Kaiser Permanente offers plans through the health insurance marketplace. You can begin searching plans here or you can get several free health insurance quotes with SmartFinancial.
Each state has their own marketplace. If you’re not sure where to begin, visit https://www.healthcare.gov/. You can also schedule a personal appointment with a local Kaiser Permanente Medicare specialist: 1-866-973-4588.
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 1-800-919-8807 with any additional questions.
To submit claims for reimbursement, contact member services at 1-888-901-4636. Otherwise, you should be covered except for copay. If you need reimbursement for Medicare Part D prescriptions, you must use the Member reimbursement drug claim form (PDF). For all other prescriptions (non-Medicare and Medicare without Part D) you must use this Prescription claim form (PDF).
Wellcare offers Medicare Part C, or Medicare Advantage. They also offer Medicare Part D, Medicare Prescription Drug coverage.
As a member, you may have your prescriptions filled by any network pharmacy. However, the amount you pay may be lower if you fill your prescription through CVS/Caremark Mail Service Pharmacy.
WellCare Value Script has a low premium and $0 copays for Tier 1 prescriptions when filled at a preferred cost-share pharmacy.
The annual deductible for WellCare is $415.
Check out our full list of common questions about WellCare.
Kaiser Permanente has a better than average complaint ratio, especially for it’s group plans.
Individuals, families and people whose employers offer Kaiser Permanente are eligible for coverage. Kaiser also offers Medicare Supplement plans and Medicare Advantage, which is the alternative to Original Medicare.
If your health plan benefits include a prepaid prescription drug plan, you must use a Kaiser pharmacy to obtain drugs at plan prices. You can fill your initial prescription at many MedImpact pharmacies, which include Walgreens, CVS, Rite Aid, Kroger, Safeway and Costco, but you’ll need to order any refills through a Kaiser Permanente pharmacy or a mail order refill service through Kaiser.
Target Pharmacy is now CVS, so yes, for an initial prescription you are covered. However, if your health plan benefits include a prepaid prescription drug plan, you must use a Kaiser pharmacy to obtain drugs at plan prices.
Check out our full list of common questions about Kaiser Permanente.
|WellCare Contact Info|
|Address||P.O. Box 31370|
|Phone||1 (800) 960-2530|
|Kaiser Permanente Contact Info|
|Address||1 Kaiser Plaza, Oakland, CA 94612|
|Phone||1 (510) 271-5910|
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