Since its inception in 1933 with the establishment of the Spokane Medical Service Bureau and Medical Service Corporation, Premera Blue Cross has been an esteemed provider of healthcare services in the Pacific Northwest. 

The year 1998 witnessed a significant moment in Premera’s history when Medical Service Corporation merged with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Washington and Alaska, culminating in the formation of Premera Blue Cross. 

Today, Premera Blue Cross is a trusted healthcare provider for most of Washington and Alaska, while its subsidiary Lifewise operates in select regions of Washington and Oregon.

Premera Blue Cross Medicare plans

Premera Blue Cross offers Medicare Supplement, Medicare Advantage, and Medicare Part D plans. They offer Medicare plans in Alaska and throughout Washington except for Clark county. 

Premera Blue Cross Medicare Supplement plans

Premera Blue Cross Medicare Supplement plans are designed to provide comprehensive coverage to seniors enrolled in Medicare. These plans offer a variety of benefits, including coverage for services such as hospital stays, doctor visits, and prescription drugs. 

Premera BCBS Medicare Supplement plans are designed to fill the gaps in coverage that exist under Original Medicare, providing seniors with greater financial protection and peace of mind. These plans are available in a range of options to meet the unique needs of each individual. With Premera Blue Cross Medicare Supplement plans, seniors can feel confident they get the coverage they need to stay healthy and secure.

Premera Blue Cross Medigap plans are available in Washington and Alaska and offer access to four of the ten standardized Medicare Supplement plans.

Premera Medicare Advantage plans

Premera presents a diverse array of Medicare Advantage plans, surpassing the benefits included in Original Medicare. There are certain instances where plan premiums amount to $0. However, you must continue to pay the Medicare Part B premium. The plans offer extensive networks comprising numerous doctors, specialists, therapists, and hospitals. 

Premera offers a range of Medicare Advantage plans that cater to varying regional requirements. These plans are exclusively offered as Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs) and provide comprehensive coverage that includes medical, prescription drug, and fitness benefits. 

Additionally, specific plans offer dental coverage as an optional add-on. The in-office copays associated with these plans are budget-friendly, and telehealth visits are even more cost-effective. The monthly premiums for these plans vary from zero to $54, and the maximum annual out-of-pocket expense can range between $5,000 to $6,700.

Medicare Part D prescription drug plans

Part D plans provide coverage for prescriptions filled at a pharmacy. Premera Blue Cross doesn’t offer stand-alone prescription drug plans. To get drug coverage from Premera, you can enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan that includes drug coverage. 

Pros and cons


  • Affiliate of Blue Cross Blue Shield
  • Offers the top three Medigap plans
  • Affordable premiums


  • Limited plan access
  • Only HMO plans for Medicare Advantage
  • Limited Medicare Supplement plan options

Premera Blue Cross Financial strength ratings

The financial strength ratings of an insurance provider are an important consideration for customers and stakeholders, and Premera BCBS has consistently maintained high ratings. The company has been designated with an A rating from A.M. Best, which indicates excellent financial strength and stability. 


Premera Blue Cross is a respected health insurance company that has been serving the needs of its customers for over 80 years. It is dedicated to providing affordable and comprehensive health insurance coverage to its members across the Pacific Northwest. 

Premera BCBS reviews have consistently highlighted its commitment to customer satisfaction and the high quality of its health plans. The company’s extensive network of healthcare providers and hospitals ensures members access the best healthcare services. 

Premera Blue Cross is known for its innovative health and wellness programs promoting healthy living and disease prevention. Overall, Premera BCBS is a reliable and trustworthy health insurance provider that consistently delivers excellent service to its members.


Is Premera Blue Cross the same as Blue Cross Blue Shield?

Premera Blue Cross is an affiliate of BCBS operating in Washington State and Alaska. All Blue Cross affiliates are independent companies that work together to provide excellent healthcare options. 

Is Premera BCBS an HMO or PPO?

All Premera Medicare Advantage plans are HMOs. These plans require you to visit healthcare providers and facilities that are in-network. The only out-of-network benefits would be for emergency treatment.

What type of health insurance is Premera Blue Cross

Premera BCBS provides several types of health insurance. Health insurance options include:

Do Premera Medicare plans require referrals?

Premera offers both Medigap and Medicare Advantage plans. Medigap plans allow you to use any healthcare provider nationwide that accepts Medicare and doesn’t require referrals. All Premera Medicare Advantage plans are HMOs. You must remain in-network for the plan to pay medical costs. You’ll need referrals to see specialists.

How to enroll in a Premera Blue Cross Medicare plan

Enrolling in a Premera Blue Cross Medicare plan is a simple process that can be done online or over the phone. To get started, fill out our online comparison form and review plans or speak to one of our advisors. 

Alternatively, you can call the number above to connect with a licensed insurance agent who can answer questions and guide you through enrollment. With Premera BCBS, you can have peace of mind knowing you can access comprehensive healthcare coverage that meets your needs.

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Written By:
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Lindsay Malzone, Lindsay Malzone is the Medicare editor for She's been contributing to many well-known publications since 2017. Her passion is educating Medicare beneficiaries on all their supplemental Medicare options so they can make an informed decision on their healthcare coverage.
Reviewed By:
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Rodolfo Marrero, Rodolfo Marrero is one of the co-founders at He has been helping consumers find the right coverage since the site was founded in 2013. Rodolfo is a licensed insurance agent that works hand-in-hand with the team to ensure the accuracy of the content.