Aetna is a health care company that offers a good and wide range of products, such as medical, dental, and disability plans. Aetna is one of the major health insurance companies in the US whose services are used by businesses, organizations, workers, and students across 50 states. This long-standing company first came into the scene in 1850, during which a volcano in Sicily, Mt. Etna, was active. It was first established as Aetna Insurance Company, but became Aetna, Inc. in 1996, following the merger of Aetna Life and Casualty Company and US Healthcare. In the last ten years, this company has handled health care services of many organizations. It has then placed more emphasis on its health care operations.
The company is composed of Health Care, Group Insurance, and Large Case Pensions. The Health Care department deals with a wide range of health plans (medical, dental, and pharmacy benefits). More than 15 million people are holders of Aetna's medical plan. There are more than 13 million dental members. The pharmacy benefits management section has about 10 million members. The Group Insurance segment, which has 15 million members, includes disability and long-term health insurance products. The Large Case Pension segment includes a number of retirement products, although their business does not actively promote this segment.
Aetna has an extensive network of health care service providers, including doctors and health care insurance carriers. The clients of their products range from employers to single customers. Their business is also attempting to increase the number of its members by advancing its product offerings. They also have sales personnel that sell health care products. Independent brokers and consultants also sell Aetna insurance products.
The health care products are offered to employers, who, in turn, present them to the employees. However, the employees have the privilege to choose the products of their preference. So, the scheme is that the employers pay the sum of monthly premiums of employees to Aetna. The premiums are deducted automatically from the salaries of the employees. On the other hand, some Group Insurance products are sold straight to the employees. This scheme happens if the employer does not subsidize the premiums for these products. In fact, the covered employee can pay directly to the company itself.
Aetna does have its pros and cons, despite being one of the leading health insurance providers in the United States. It is just like any other insurance company, whose schemes and services have some flaws. Some people may not get optimum benefits from their chosen company. For instance, most do not provide maternity coverage, so pregnant women may have to look for another insurance provider. Nevertheless, Aetna covers expenses for complications that occur during pregnancy. Aetna also covers infants within the first month.
Another known limitation in the insurance policy offered by Aetna is its age cutoff. They do not provide coverage for people 65 years and up.
Competitive insurance cost and extensive coverage, however, make up for the identified disadvantages.
Customers, on the other hand, should consider certain factors before buying an insurance policy. These factors include affiliated hospitals and doctors, prescription benefits, cost and premiums, and lifetime maximum coverage.