Blue Cross Blue Shield Insurance Review 2024 Staff Profile Picture
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Established in 1929, Blue Cross Blue Shield boasts a strong history of providing health insurance in the United States. Known for its nationwide coverage and positive customer ratings, BCBS is a solid option for your health insurance needs. In this review, we’ll explore coverage options, analyze advantages and drawbacks, assess the consumer experience, and guide you on purchasing a BCBS plan through the ACA marketplace.

Our Take on Blue Cross Blue Shield


  • Available nationwide
  • Positive customer service ratings
  • Extensive wellness initiatives and discounts


  • Relatively high premiums
  • Lower additional coverage options than competitors

Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) excels in its nationwide availability, facilitated by a unique federation structure that ensures coverage across the United States. Additionally, its commitment to customer satisfaction, evidenced by consistently higher-than-average ratings from the National Committee of Quality Assurance, underscores its dedication to providing a positive healthcare experience. Lastly, it’s essential to note the organization's Blue365 program, which promotes policyholder well-being through extensive wellness initiatives and exclusive discounts. 

Yet, the comprehensive coverage and nationwide reach come at a cost, as BCBS is often associated with relatively high premiums. Moreover, individuals seeking a wide array of supplementary coverage options may find fewer choices within the BCBS network. 

Blue Cross Blue Shield at a Glance

Where Blue Cross Blue Shield stands out

  • A broad network of healthcare providers: Blue Cross Blue Shield’s (BCBS) extensive network is a key strength, offering policyholders access to various healthcare providers. This substantial network enhances the flexibility and convenience for BCBS policyholders, ensuring they can receive healthcare services from a range of providers.

  • Various coverage options: With BCBS, individuals can choose from a range of coverage options, allowing flexibility to tailor plans according to specific health needs and financial considerations. The ACA marketplace includes bronze, silver, gold, and platinum plans, each with varying levels of coverage and cost-sharing. 

  • Nationwide availability: BCBS operates across the country, providing consistent and accessible health insurance options regardless of your location. This national presence improves the convenience and reliability of their coverage.

What could be improved

  • Higher premiums than competitors: BCBS plans can be relatively more expensive than those of some competitors, leading to higher monthly premiums. This might pose a financial challenge for those seeking more budget-friendly options. 

  • The complexity of plans: With various coverage options often comes added complexity, which may make it challenging for some individuals to navigate the terms and conditions — potentially confusing coverage details and limitations.

Blue Cross Blue Shield compared to the competition

For individuals seeking comprehensive health coverage, understanding the cost implications is crucial. Below is a comparison table outlining Blue Cross Blue Shield’s annual expenses for its Silver Value plan, alongside similar plans from its competitors. These prices reflect the estimated costs for a 30-year-old potential policyholder.


Monthly Premium

Estimated Yearly Cost

Annual Deductible













US Health and Life








Available discounts

  • Premium Tax Credits (Subsidies): Many individuals purchasing BCBS plans through the ACA marketplace may qualify for premium subsidies based on income levels, significantly reducing monthly insurance costs. 

  • Cost-Sharing Reductions: Eligible individuals with lower incomes may also benefit from cost-sharing reductions, lowering out-of-pocket expenses like deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance. 

  • Blue365 Program: BCBS provides the Blue365 program, offering additional perks. Free to enroll, Blue365 offers discounts on fitness programs, nutrition services, and personal care items, promoting a holistic approach to health and well-being.

  • Multi-Plan Discounts: Those who enroll in multiple insurance plans, like dental or vision, can receive a discount on their policies. 

  • Telemedicine Discounts: Given the increasing popularity of Telehealth services, BCBS plans often provide discounts or lower copayments for virtual doctor visits, promoting convenient and cost-effective healthcare access.

What Health Insurance Coverage Options Are Available?

  • ACA Marketplace Plans (Bronze to Platinum): Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) offers four plans through the ACA marketplace, corresponding with the standard metal tiers. Bronze plans typically have lower premiums but higher out-of-pocket costs, making them suitable for individuals anticipating lower healthcare usage. Silver plans strike a balance between premiums and out-of-pocket costs, and gold plans often have higher premiums but lower out-of-pocket costs. Lastly, platinum plans have the highest premiums but the lowest out-of-pocket costs.

  • Employer-Sponsored Group Insurance: BCBS also offers group health plans through employers, providing coverage for employees and their dependents. Premiums are typically shared between employers and employees, making these policies more affordable. 

  • Medicare Plans: BCBS provides Medicare plans designed for individuals aged 65 and older, although some younger individuals with specific disabilities may also qualify. These plans include Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement, and Prescription Drug Plans. 

Additional coverage options

  • Dental Insurance: BCBS offers dental insurance that covers routine check-ups, cleanings, dental procedures, and preventative services to maintain oral health.

  • Vision Insurance: BCBS vision insurance is designed to provide coverage for eye exams, prescription eyewear, and contact lenses. Specific plans may include coverage or discounts on laser eye surgery. 

  • Behavioral Health Coverage: BCBS provides comprehensive behavioral health services to address mental health and substance abuse needs. This may include counseling and therapy, inpatient services, substance abuse treatment, and mental health screenings.

  • Prescription Drug Coverage: Individuals who regularly take prescription drugs to manage health conditions may benefit from enrolling in prescription drug coverage from BCBS. These plans focus on providing coverage for prescription medications as part of health insurance plans or standalone options.

Blue Cross Blue Shield Health Insurance Consumer Experience

Various industry assessments reflect that Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) has a commendable customer experience. The National Committee of Quality Assurance rates BCBS above average, earning a notable 3.5 out of 5 for customer satisfaction. Customers often praise BCBS for its commitment to providing an exceptional patient experience.

JD Power’s regional data supports this positive customer standing, particularly in Kansas, Ohio, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. BCBS surpasses regional averages in several states, including Louisiana, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Idaho, New Jersey, New York, and Nevada. BCBS customers consistently enjoy service that exceeds expectations in these areas, contributing to the insurer’s favorable reputation. However, it’s essential to note regional variations and JD Power’s data points to lower customer satisfaction ratings in Texas. 

These differences can be attributed to the unique structure of BCBS. Unlike a singular conglomerate, BCBS operates as a federation of independently operated and managed entities across different states, each functioning as an autonomous insurance provider. This decentralized structure allows BCBS to tailor its services to the specific needs and regulatory environments of individual regions, but it also introduces variations in the quality of customer experience. 

Still, certain contributing factors can cause this variation at the state level, including timely claims processing, the accessibility of a robust provider network, customer service responsiveness, and transparent communication about coverage and costs. When evaluating your health insurance options, considering these regional differences can help you make informed choices that align with your needs and preferences. 

Where Can You Get Blue Cross Blue Shield Health Insurance in the United States?

As of 2023, Blue Cross Blue Shield is available in all 50 states, including the District of Columbia. What makes this possible is the unique structure of BCBS, in that each state has its own independent BCBS, and some states even have multiple entities. 

How Much Does Blue Cross Blue Shield Health Insurance Cost?

The total cost of your Blue Cross Blue Shield health insurance will depend on your chosen tier. If you’re shopping on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) Marketplace, you can expect to see a range of options, and the expense is contingent upon the metal tier selected. 

Bronze plans, known for their affordability, typically feature lower premiums but higher deductibles. Conversely, Platinum plans command higher premiums but offer lower deductibles. Many ACA enrollees find a middle ground with Silver plans, balancing cost and coverage. 

For BCBS’s Silver Value plan, a 30-year-old potential policyholder could anticipate a monthly premium of $483. This plan comes with a deductible of $5,900, reflecting a trade-off between upfront costs and potential out-of-pocket expenses. BCBS estimates that, based on low usage, the yearly cost of this plan would be approximately $7,299. 

How To Buy Blue Cross Blue Shield Health Insurance

  1. Visit the official website, the platform for enrolling in health insurance through the Affordable Care Act (ACA) marketplace. 

  2. Create a user account on Depending on your state, you may be redirected to your state-specific marketplace. 

  3. Fill out the online application, providing details about your household, income, and other relevant information. This information helps determine your eligibility for subsidies and the available BCBS plans.

  4. Once your application is complete, you can explore the health insurance plans available in your area. You can filter specifically for BCBS. 

  5. Compare plans based on coverage, premiums, deductibles, and other factors. Consider your healthcare needs and budget while making this decision.

  6. After selecting a suitable plan, proceed to enroll through the ACA marketplace. Follow the prompts to provide additional information and confirm your coverage choice.

  7. Once you’ve completed enrollment, verify your coverage details and make any necessary payments to ensure your BSBC health insurance is active.

Blue Cross Blue Shield Health Insurance FAQ


Expertise’s health insurance rating methodology takes into account the following details about each company:

  • Financial strength: This category examines a company’s ability to pay future claims based on assessments from independent agencies like AM Best and Demotech. Companies with a higher score from these third-party companies ranked higher in this category. 

  • Customer satisfaction: Ratings from the Better Business Bureau are a valuable metric for assessing overall customer satisfaction with health insurance companies. By utilizing BBB ratings, we gained access to a comprehensive evaluation of each company’s performance in areas like customer service, reliability, and transparency. Companies with a higher score ranked higher in this category.

  • Coverage availability: Our team examined state availability for each company and rated companies with more availability higher than competitors. 

  • Consumer experience: For this category, our team reviewed each company’s website, mobile app, quote tool, and customer service availability. 

  • Consumer complaints: Our team reviewed complaints to state regulators as reported by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). To assess how insurers compare to one another, the NAIC calculates a complaint index each year for each subsidiary, measuring its share of total complaints relative to its size or share of total premiums in the industry. The NAIC assigns a median complaint ratio of 1.0. Companies with an NAIC complaint score of less than 1 scored higher in this category. 

  • Premium cost: This category assesses health insurance costs based on the quotes we gathered from each company for a 30-year-old potential policyholder. We prioritized Silver plans offering moderate premiums alongside lower deductibles to ensure a balanced review. Companies that provided lower quotes scored higher in this category.  

To score companies in these categories, we collected data points from the companies' websites, company representatives, state regulator data, and third-party analyses. 

These data points were then compared against each other and given a star rating score, where one star represents a poor rating and a five-star score represents an excellent rating. To calculate the star rating, we looked at each company’s total weighted score, divided by the maximum score, and multiplied by five.  

Our ratings are weighted based on our editorial opinions. We use the following weightings for our homeowner’s insurance company ratings: 

  • Financial strength (20%) 

  • Customer satisfaction (15%) 

  • Coverage availability (10%)

  • Consumer experience (20%)

  • Consumer complaints (15%)

  • Premium cost (20%)

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