Colorado Health Plans Score Low in New Report

The Rockies aren’t the only ones who were clobbered by people from Massachusetts. The Bay State recently had four health plans land in the top 10 of a list of the country’s best health insurance companies. No Colorado-based plans made it into the top 50. U.S.News & World Report and the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) released their annual ranking of “America’s Best Health Plans” last week. With companies in New England taking 17 of the top 20 spots, health plans in the rest of the country – especially the West – were left in the dust.

Cigna HealthCare of Colorado nabbed the honor of the top health insurance company in Colorado with 55th place overall. The insurer ranked behind just one other company west of the Mississippi. Other Colorado plans ranking in the top 100 were the Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Colorado (62nd) and UnitedHealthcare of Colorado (77th). All three plans scored higher in the “prevention” and “treatment” categories than the “consumer satisfaction” category.

And no wonder. In September, Cigna was fined $400,000 by the Colorado Division of Insurance for violations including untimely payment of claims and inappropriate denial of benefits.

Other Western states faired just as poorly. Two California plans and one Washington state plan made the top 100, and only a handful of plans across Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, Idaho, Texas and Nevada cracked the top 200.

This is the third year for the rankings, which are based on more than 100 factors of clinical performance and customer satisfaction. The report was released just before many insurers’ end-of-year open enrollment periods when customers can switch plans.