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Best Cheap Health Insurance in Massachusetts 2021

Best Cheap Health Insurance in Massachusetts 2021

Find Cheap Health Insurance Quotes in Massachusetts

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The cheapest health insurance plan for most people in Massachusetts is the BMC HealthNet Plan Silver A II, which is the cheapest Silver policy in 71% of the state's counties.

If you are looking for individual health insurance in Massachusetts, you can purchase cheap coverage through the state's online exchange. In the marketplace, you may be able to find a policy that fits your financial situation and provides adequate coverage for your medical needs.

Cheapest health insurance by metal tier

To help you find the best health insurance in Massachusetts, we compared health plans offered in the largest counties to find the most affordable option for each metal tier of coverage.

When a health insurance provider calculates your monthly premium, a key determinant will be your age. As you can see from the graph below, for every metal tier, the monthly premium gets progressively more expensive as your age increases.

Find Cheap Health Insurance Quotes in Massachusetts

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For example, for a Silver policy, a 40-year-old will pay on average 18%, or $80, more per month than a 21-year-old. The difference is even larger for a 60-year-old who pays 70%, or $371, more per month than a 40-year-old.

The table below shows the cheapest plan available along with the monthly premium for a 40-year-old, in addition to the deductible and out-of-pocket maximum. These plans should be used as an initial evaluation of which metal tier might fit your individual needs.

Metal tierCheapest planDeductibleMaximum out-of-pocketMonthly cost for a 40-year-old
BronzeBMC HealthNet Plan Bronze$3,600$7,000$271
SilverBMC HealthNet Plan Silver A II$2,000$8,550$344
GoldBMC HealthNet Plan Low Gold$2,250$5,800$409
PlatinumBMC HealthNet Plan Platinum$0$3,000$536

Gold and Platinum plans are the most expensive policies offered, but they have the lowest or nearly the lowest deductibles available. For example, the Gold plan has a premium that is $138 more per month for a 40-year-old than the premium for the Bronze policy. The Bronze plan is the most affordable because it has the highest deductible amount among all health plan tiers offered in Massachusetts.

Finding the best health insurance coverage in Massachusetts

The best health insurance coverage for you will be determined by your level of income and expected medical costs. Both of these factors will directly affect what plans will be affordable and appropriate for the medical services you require.

Massachusetts has adopted the expanded version of Medicaid. This allows anyone with a household income of less than 138% of the federal poverty level to enroll in Medicaid. If you are not eligible for this program, then you can purchase an individual health insurance policy through the Massachusetts state marketplace.

To aid you in choosing a tier level that fits your needs, we have detailed each level of coverage and who it works best for.

Start with Silver plans

We recommend beginning your health insurance search with Silver metal tier plans. These policies have modest premiums and deductibles. For instance, the cheapest Silver plan has a monthly premium that is $73 more expensive than the cheapest Bronze plan but a deductible that is $1,600 less.

In some situations, a Silver plan can be the most cost-effective health policy due to cost-sharing reductions. These reductions decrease the amount you pay in deductibles, coinsurance and copays. However, you will only be eligible for cost-sharing reductions if your household income falls below 250% of the federal poverty level.

Gold and Platinum plans: Great if you have expensive medical costs

Gold and Platinum plans are the most expensive plans on the Massachusetts marketplace in terms of monthly premiums, but they do have the lowest deductibles and shared costs. For this reason, these policies are best if you expect to have a lot of medical expenses and will use your health insurance often. One such example is if you have an illness and need a costly prescription refilled on a monthly basis.

Bronze: Best if you are young and healthy

Bronze plans are the most affordable policies but have the highest deductibles and out-of-pocket expenses. Due to the deductible level, you could end up spending a lot on smaller medical expenses before coverage kicks in.

Therefore, Bronze is best for young, healthy individuals who want emergency protection in case of an extremely expensive medical issue.

Short-term health insurance in Massachusetts

Short-term health insurance is not available for purchase in Massachusetts, and it is illegal under Massachusetts law for any company to offer one of these products. The main reason for this is the state's strict guaranteed-issue and rating requirements for all health insurance products. Short-term plans do not meet the guaranteed-issue standard since they are medically underwritten.

Find Cheap Health Insurance Quotes in Massachusetts

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Health insurance companies in Massachusetts

There are currently nine health insurance providers on the Massachusetts exchange:

  • Tufts Health Plan Direct
  • Health New England
  • BMC HealthNet Plan
  • Harvard Pilgrim Health Care
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts
  • AllWays Health Partners
  • Tufts Health Plan Premier
  • Fallon Health
  • UnitedHealthcare

It is important to consider the company that you purchase a plan from, as some companies may provide more member benefits for policyholders or have better customer service. Although all of these companies sell policies in Massachusetts, a particular insurer may not be available in your county.

Cheapest Silver plan by county

The availability of health insurance, as well as the cost, will be affected by the county that you live in. For instance, for a 40-year-old, the BMC HealthNet Plan Silver A II is the cheapest Silver plan in Essex County with a monthly premium of $347. However, in Nantucket, the same Silver plan is $569 — a difference of $222 per month.

CountyCheapest planAge 40Couple, age 40
HampdenBMC HealthNet Plan Silver A II$364$727
HampshireBMC HealthNet Plan Silver A II$364$727
WorcesterBMC HealthNet Plan Silver A II$364$727
BerkshireTufts Health Direct Silver 2000 II$376$753
FranklinBMC HealthNet Plan Silver A II$364$727
MiddlesexBMC HealthNet Plan Silver A II$409$817
EssexBMC HealthNet Plan Silver A II$347$694
PlymouthBMC HealthNet Plan Silver A II$354$708
NorfolkBMC HealthNet Plan Silver A II$354$708
BristolBMC HealthNet Plan Silver A II$344$687
SuffolkBMC HealthNet Plan Silver A II$354$708
BarnstableTufts Health Direct Silver 2000 II$374$747
DukesPremier Silver 2000$569$1,138
NantucketPremier Silver 2000$569$1,138
Sample rates are based on monthly premiums from counties in Massachusetts.

How can I save money on health insurance?

Saving money on health insurance involves choosing the right health insurance policy for your needs at the cheapest available price. By selecting a plan that fits your needs, you will find that you can actually save money instead of just choosing the plan with the most affordable premium. Read more.

What metal tier of health insurance should I purchase?

The best metal tier of health insurance will depend on your health, insurance needs, age and family situation. Generally, younger and healthier individuals will not require a higher metal tier such as Gold or Platinum since they will not use the insurance as frequently.

On the other hand, families with children may want to consider a Silver health insurance plan, as this policy will have considerably more coinsurance benefits compared to a Bronze plan. Individuals with monthly drug prescriptions or personalized health care will want to consider a Gold plan or higher since these provide the most benefits. Read more.

How do I find the right health insurance company for me?

There are many health insurance companies available and a ton of options on state health insurance exchanges, which can make choosing the right company a daunting task. Often, cheaper health insurance plans can mean that the company does not provide added benefits such as gym memberships or a personalized telemedicine experience. Therefore, you should evaluate what your needs are before selecting a health insurance provider. Read more.

Methodology

We gathered health insurance rates for shoppers in Massachusetts using the state's exchange. Using the premiums, averages were determined for a variety of variables such as metal tier, age, family size and county.

Sterling Price

Sterling Price is a research analyst at ValuePenguin specializing in health and life insurance. He graduated from Syracuse University with a bachelors degree in Finance and Accounting and has previous experience as a licensed life insurance representative.

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.

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