Comparing Kaiser Permanente HMO and HSA Plans

HMO, HSA Cost vs Value

By Thomas Cazneau

With terms like “deductible”, “HMO”, and “HSA”, choosing a health insurance plan can seem like trying to learn a new language. Below I will focus on defining the basic features between Kaiser Permanente HMO vs HSA plans for individuals and families. For more details on what to look for in a Kaiser Permanente HMO or HSA Deductible plan, click Compare Health Insurance.

What is a HMO?
HMO stands for Health Maintenance Organization. With Kaiser Permanente Private Plans, all options are HMO, meaning that you can only go to Kaiser Permanente to be covered for services except for emergency and urgent care benefits, which can be done out of network. This makes it convenient for members to use their coverage at one central location.

Why choose a HMO Deductible Plan?
There are several key features which make HMO Deductible Plans a popular choice. Here are some benefits attached to this particular type of Kaiser Permanente Individual and Family Plan:

      • Low predictable copays for office visits and prescription meds when covered.


      • Annual checkups and preventive services are no charge


      • Usually, you can get a relatively low health insurance deductible for catastrophic services, for example.


    • Nice middle of the road plan for many people because they can get the benefits they need most and still keep their premium low.

Why choose an HSA deductible health plan?
An HSA Plan is a major medical policy. Here are some features related to HSA Plans.

      • Typically, HSA deductible Plans tend to have lower premium costs than HMO deductible Plans because HSA’s are not as comprehensive. This plan type could work for people who rarely visit the doctor and are mainly looking for a plan to cover them for routine checkups and major medical events.


    • While still an HMO, this particular Kaiser Permanente Private Plan gives you the option of opening up a Health Savings Account (HSA) at the bank of your choice. The funds in this bank account are designated for medical and dental expenses. Taxes or penalties do not apply to any monies from this HSA account, unless they are spent for non-qualified expenses.

The Main Difference between HMO and HSA
The main difference between these two types of plans is that most Kaiser Permanente HMO deductible plans cover office visits and prescriptions right away for low copays, while HSA deductible plans do not cover these services until the deductible is reached.

HMO vs HSA? Choose what’s right for you.
Not everyone has the same wants and needs when it comes to choosing the right Kaiser Permanente Health Insurance Plan. While an HMO Deductible Plan might be perfect for one individual, an HSA Deductible Plan might fit better for another individual’s preference or situation. Since there are so many HMO and HSA plans to choose from, we make it our job to help each customer find the plan that best fits their needs and wishes. Feel free to give us a call for a plan recommendation or comment below with questions.

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