Should I Consider Getting a Health Net Health Plan?

by John Hansen

Learn What the Health Net Health Plan is About and How it Compares to Other Plans Like Anthem Blue Cross

Health Net medical insurance coverage includes both HMO and PPO products. According to the Health Net Health Plan, their HMO plans are more popular in Southern California, while their PPO products are more popular in Northern California.

Health Insurance from Health Net: Full Networks and Skinny Networks

For HMO, the Health Net Health Plan (now owned by Centene since the recent merger) offers a full network as well as skinny network products. In Southern California, consumers often choose the skinny networks, which offer lower premiums.

In Northern California, Health Net medical insurance coverage includes the broadest networks. According to Health Net reps, their networks in the northern areas of California are comparable to Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of California.

Prices tend to be based on network, with the skinniest networks offering the cheapest plans. The Health Net Insurance Company offers their most robust networks off exchange. So Health Net Covered California Plans will tend to have smaller networks.

The Health Net Health Plan, the Honest California Carrier

Health Net reps argue that their company has approached the Obamacare marketplace honestly. Other health plans messed with split carriers, drug formularies, and prescription drug coverages. Health insurance from Health Net has kept clear coverage benefits and above board plan descriptions. “Our company has stability, and we haven’t changed,” say reps from the company.

According to the Health Net Heath Plan, “For prescription drug coverage, we don’t have any generic-only plans. Our concern was, ‘What if people get cancer?’” If members got cancer or had other medical issues that required brand name drugs, the Health Net Insurance Company did not want to put their members in a position where they had no coverage to treat their medical problem.

Out-of-Network Coverage Better Than Anthem Blue Cross

If you go with Anthem Blue Cross and use out-of-network benefits, you’ll really get dinged. Health Net Health Plan reps argued that their out-of-network coverage is often better than Anthem’s.

I asked the Health Net insurance reps about the future of their California health plan. They said, “We will continue offering narrow and full network plans. We’ll give more choices.” Company reps expect that Anthem Blue Cross and Kaiser Permanente will continue to be at the top of the market in California, but they are watching to see what happens with Blue Shield. They expect to continue to be #4 for Obamacare California insurance sales unless they can beat out Blue Shield and become #3.

Health Net Medical Insurance Networks

As far as their networks, in Los Angeles health insurance from Health Net offers an HMO network called “Community Care”. They offer an EPO product without out-of-network coverage at a lower price. If you pay more, you can get a Health Net medical insurance plan with full network coverage. Full network plans include coverage from medical providers like Stanford and PAMF, the Palo Alto Medical Foundation.

Representatives from the Health Net Health Plan admitted that in Region 12 they changed their PPO offerings because certain providers were driving up expenses. In this region, they no longer include UCLA, Cedar or Santa Monica in their PPO products.


Not sure how Obamacare affects your health care plans in California? Learn how the ACA works in California, including benefits, costs and enrollment.

Covered California is the Golden State’s official health exchange marketplace where individuals, families and small businesses can find high-quality, low-cost California government health insurance.

Learn about Obamacare income guidelines in California using our income limits chart, and see if you’re eligible for government assistance.

Learn about the Covered California website. Find easy online enrollment. Set up your account, log in, buy insurance and more on the California health marketplace website.