Many organizations rate health insurance companies. These ratings are important to take into account when trying to choose which health insurance provider in which to purchase a policy. Since health insurance coverage is so important, it is also important to choose a reputable provider.
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What is the A. M. Best Company?
The A. M. Best Company was founded in 1899 in New York by Alfred M. Best. Today the company is headquartered in New Jersey. This company also has main offices in Washington, D.C., Hong Kong, and London.
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has classified A.M. Best as a NRSRO. An NRSRO is a Nationally Recognized Statistical Rating Organization. In short, this means that this is a very trustworthy ratings company.
A.M. Best provides rating for all types of insurance companies, not just health insurance providers. A. M. Best mainly provides ratings on the financial strength of a company. There are other well-known agencies like Fitch, Moody’s, and Standard and Poor’s that offer the same type of ratings, but A. M. Best specializes in insurance providers.
A.M. Best also provides the public with information that affects the insurance industry. They produce numerous publications to keep people informed on world events and new laws that will directly affect whatever type of insurance they have. Their website also has all of this information as well.
What is the Better Business Bureau?
The Better Business Bureau is an organization that grades businesses and protects the public from frauds and scams. This organization has more than one hundred regional chapters spread throughout the United States and Canada. The Better Business Bureau was founded in 1912 and businesses must become members and pay dues to be rated with them.
Many people choose to use the Better Business Bureau to look into prominent scams. Some of the areas that the Better Business Bureau monitors include:
- Health care services
- Computer scams
- Food and beverage
- Education scams
What is J. D. Power and Associates?
Unlike the A. M. Best Company that mainly provides financial ratings for a company, J. D. Power and Associates provides customer satisfaction ratings. The company was founded in 1968 and has since become a well-known and respected source of information for consumers.
The industries that J. D. Power and Associates provides ratings for industries including:
They also provide individual business ratings.
Therefore, with J. D. Power and Associates someone can see how an insurance company is rated and then check to see how certain healthcare facilities in their area stack up as well. The company provides ratings and information on health care plans, hospitals, and pharmacies.
Why are these types of ratings so important?
Finding the best health insurance you can afford is very important. You never know when an accident or unexpected diagnosis might occur and having the best health insurance possible is really the only way to protect yourself from having to pay for it all yourself.
Deciding on the type of coverage you need is the first step. Once that has been determined, the next issue people have is choosing which company to get their coverage through. Most people base this decision solely on the price of the coverage in question. This is not always the best method.
Using a source like the A. M. Best Company will give you a better understanding of where that health insurance provider is financially. If that provider is experiencing financial problems those problems might start to affect the policyholders overtime by causing their monthly premium rates to be increased.
Companies like J. D. Power and Associates help by providing customer satisfaction ratings. An insurance provider could be doing great financially, but their customer service rating could be very low. This could mean that even though the company is doing well they are very hard to deal with. This could mean many headaches for someone that has a medical condition that required them to be in contact with their insurance provider more than the average person.
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