Health Insurance

Best Cheap Health Insurance in Maryland 2021

Best Cheap Health Insurance in Maryland 2021

Find Cheap Health Insurance Quotes in Maryland

Currently insured?

Cheap health insurance in Maryland can be purchased through the state health insurance exchange or acquired if you qualify for the federally funded Medicaid program.

After comparing quotes in the state, we found that the plan KP MD Silver 3200/20%/HSA/Vision, offered by Kaiser Permanente, was the cheapest Silver policy in Maryland in most counties. We also analyzed rates to find the cheapest policies in Bronze and Gold metal tiers.

Select a plan tier to learn more:

In the state, there are currently only three health insurance providers: CareFirst, United Healthcare and Kaiser Permanente.

Cheapest health insurance by metal tier

We compared plans from the Maryland Health Connection marketplace to identify some of the cheapest health insurance options available to residents. If you do not currently receive employer-sponsored or federally funded health insurance, then you can purchase health coverage through the state marketplace. For example, if you are currently self-employed, then you can purchase a policy through the state exchange.

The table below shows the cheapest individual health insurance plans with each metal tier along with the plan deductible, out-of-pocket maximum and monthly premium for a 40-year-old. This information should be used as a starting point to figure out which metal tier fits your coverage needs and budget.

Metal tier
Cheapest plan
Maximum Out-of-Pocket
Monthly cost for a 40-year-old
BronzeBlueChoice HMO Bronze $8,250$8,250$8,250$222
SilverKP MD Silver 3200/20%/HSA/Vision$3,200$6,650$339
GoldBalance Gold Free Primary Care$3,000$8,550$326
PlatinumKP MD Platinum 0/15/Vision$0$4,000$397

Sample rates are from the largest 10 counties in Maryland.

As you can see, Maryland offers four different metal tiers for coverage: Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum. The lowest tier, Bronze, tends to have the highest deductible but the lowest monthly premium, making it the most affordable option if you are healthy and expect to have few health care expenses.

On the other hand, the higher metal tiers, such as Gold and Platinum, have more expensive premiums but lower out-of-pocket expenses. For example, the cheapest Gold metal policy in Maryland is 47% more expensive than the best-priced Bronze plan.

When an insurer offers you a quote for health insurance, one of the main determinants of the price will be your age. The graph below illustrates the average monthly cost for health insurance depending on your age and the metal tier of coverage.

For example, for a Silver policy, a 40-year-old would pay $395 on average, which is 28% more than the premium for a 21-year-old on the same policy. The jump in monthly cost is even larger as you get older, with 60-year-olds paying, on average, 112% more than 40-year-olds pay for a Silver health plan.

Cheapest health insurance companies in Maryland

Finding the best health insurance coverage in Maryland

The best health insurance coverage for you will depend on the availability of policies in your area as well as your medical and financial situation. Maryland has expanded Medicaid, which means households with income less than 138% of the poverty level can enroll in this federal health insurance program.

When searching for the most affordable health insurance, you should first check the premiums and out-of-pocket expenses to decide what is best for your situation. Typically, if you expect moderate to high medical expenses, then you should select a higher metal tier that has more expensive premiums but lower deductibles.

Gold and Platinum: Best if you have high medical costs

Gold and Platinum are the highest tiers offered in Maryland. These plans have high premiums but lower deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums, which can be the most cost-effective for people with high medical bills. You'll reach the deductible more quickly and begin paying coinsurance through your insurer. For example, say you require expensive monthly prescriptions; in this case, an upper metal tier plan would likely be the best choice.

The cheapest Gold plan in Maryland is Balance Gold Free Primary Care. Compare all tiers in Maryland above.

Silver: Best if you have lower income or average medical costs

The best plan for you depends on your medical needs and budget. We would recommend Silver plans in most situations, as they have modest premiums, deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums. If you are very healthy, then a lower-tier plan, such as Bronze, may be a better option. But if you expect to have high medical costs, a Gold plan may be the best plan for you.

All the metal tier health plans offer premium tax credits, but Silver plans are eligible for cost-sharing reductions if your income falls below 200% of the federal poverty level. This benefit provides discounts on the amount that you are required to pay in deductibles, copays and coinsurance and can make a Silver health insurance policy the most cost-effective if you qualify.

The cheapest Silver plan in Maryland is KP MD Silver 3200/20%/HSA/Vision. Compare all tiers in Maryland above.

Bronze: Best if you are young and healthy

The cheapest policies offered in Maryland are the Bronze metal tier plans. Although these health insurance plans have the most affordable premiums, they have higher deductibles, which means you will need to spend more out of pocket before your provider pays for coinsurance.

Bronze metal tier plans are available for applicants of any age. The cheapest Bronze plan in Maryland is BlueChoice HMO Bronze $8,250. Compare all tiers in Maryland above.

Short-term health insurance in Maryland

In Maryland, you can purchase short-term health insurance plans through private health providers outside of the state marketplace. The state puts additional restrictions on short-term policies, such as three-month coverage lengths and prohibited renewals.

You may want to consider short-term health insurance if you missed open enrollment or lost employer-sponsored coverage. However, it is important to note that short-term policies do not cover the essential benefits like marketplace plans do.

Find Cheap Health Insurance Quotes in Your Area

Currently insured?

Health insurance companies in Maryland

There are currently three health insurance companies that sell policies in Maryland:

  • CareFirst
  • Kaiser Permanente
  • United Healthcare

Kaiser Permanente offered the cheapest Silver health plan in most of the counties in Maryland. However, the availability of plans and providers will depend on the county in which you live. Therefore, it is important to recognize that the cheapest plan in your area may differ from the most affordable in a different county.

Cheapest Silver health insurance plan by county

Depending on where you live, the pricing of similar plans can vary. However, it happens that in the largest 11 counties of Maryland, the KP MD Silver 3200/20%/HSA/Vision, the cheapest Silver health insurance policy, has identical pricing.

Cheapest plan
Age 40
Couple, age 40
HowardKP MD Silver 3200/20%/HSA/Vision$339$679
CharlesKP MD Silver 3200/20%/HSA/Vision$339$679
St. Mary'sBalance Silver 3 Free Visits$355$710
Prince George'sKP MD Silver 3200/20%/HSA/Vision$339$679
CalvertKP MD Silver 3200/20%/HSA/Vision$339$679
Anne ArundelKP MD Silver 3200/20%/HSA/Vision$339$679
MontgomeryKP MD Silver 3200/20%/HSA/Vision$339$679
HarfordKP MD Silver 3200/20%/HSA/Vision$339$679
BaltimoreKP MD Silver 3200/20%/HSA/Vision$339$679
CarrollKP MD Silver 3200/20%/HSA/Vision$339$679
Baltimore cityKP MD Silver 3200/20%/HSA/Vision$339$679
AlleganyBlueChoice HMO Value Silver $2,250 VisionPlus$371$742
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ValuePenguin obtained information about health insurance in Maryland from the state health insurance exchange. Using the premiums, we averaged the data and found the cheapest options for a variety of variables such as metal tier, age, family size and county.

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.