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30 User Reviews

5.5

Overall Score

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LAST UPDATED: November 8th, 2021

Health care costs are high. Health insurance can help you manage these costs, so finding a good, affordable health plan matters. Regence offers Medicare and private insurance plans. It also offers dental and vision insurance.

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Regence is owned by BlueCross BlueShield but is available only to customers in Idaho, Washington, Oregon, and Utah. The company was founded in 1942 and was actually the first insurance company for Utah. Regence provides a variety of health care plans and member rewards.

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The Good

  • Types of Plans Offered
  • Member Resources
  • Health Support and Discount Programs
  • Helpful App
  • Customer Service

Types of Plans Offered

Unlike some health insurance carriers who provide practically every type of plan out there, Regence is a smaller insurer. It's one of the many subsidiaries of BlueCross BlueShield and has a smaller network (only four states large).

The types of plans offered include PPOs and HMOs. Each plan-type has different rules regarding its provider network and cost sharing. PPO plans offer some cost-sharing for out-of-network providers, while HMO plans only cover care received from in-network providers.

Some plans are compatible with Health Savings Accounts. These plans are usually High Deductible Health Plans (HDHPs). Contributions made to a Health Savings Account (HSA) are tax-free and rollover year to year. As long as the funds are used for medical expenses, HSA funds remain tax-free. 

Regence's Medicare offerings include Medicare Advantage plans, prescription drug coverage, and Medicare supplement (Medigap) plans.

However, Regence BlueCross BlueShield does not provide Medicaid or short-term health insurance plans. Regence directs customers seeking Medicaid services to its sister company called LifeMap.

Regence also does not offer its own vision or dental insurance. Again, Regence directs customers to LifeMap for dental plans. However, Regence does offer vision plans through four main vision insurance companies:

  • EyeMed Vision Care
  • QualSight Lasik
  • TruVision
  • Standard Optical

As evidenced by the types of plans Regence offers, this is a smaller company with a smaller network than some health insurers. However, it still offers most of the common types of insurance plans that people need.

Regence functions under BlueCross BlueShield and work in tandem with their sister company, LifeMap, and these vision insurers to provide members with the insurance they need.

With any insurance plan, the costs will vary based on the the coverage offered, number of people on the plan, etc. Be sure to review the premiums, copay amounts, annual deductible, and out-of-pocket limit before you complete enrollment.

The "Shop Plans" link on the company's website leads you to more detailed information about the plans that Regence offers. After giving out your zip code, you can find out what insurance coverage is offered in your area and compare monthly premiums so that you can find affordable care and an affordable coverage plan.

Member Resources

As a potential customer of Regence, you can shop for health plans on the company website and use a live chat feature or, of course, phone and email, to ask more detailed questions about each plan.

You can also use the company's Find a Doctor tool to see whether the doctor you currently see is in Regence's network.

After becoming a Regence member, you have access to many more resources. You can still find providers in the network and view patient reviews of providers. There's also a cost estimator, an explanation of the benefits on your plan, and downloadable forms for when you file a claim.

There's a member dedicated phone number, too. The member dashboard is what Regence calls the online patient portal. Through this, you can check the status of a claim you filed, check your deductible status and see more information about your benefits.

In addition, one of the features that makes Regence a 24/7 company is called Advice24, a live chat tool that connects you to an online nurse for any medical questions you might have, even outside of regular business hours.

Members are also rewarded for trying to get or stay healthy. If you take a health assessment offered by Regence and then track your activity to see if you're becoming healthier, Regence will reward you. Perks like these make Regence a member-friendly insurance company and keep you up-to-date on your account and your health.

Health Support and Discount Programs

Discount programs are in no short supply at Regence. This company can help set you up with a program for more typical health and wellness pursuits, like those for weight loss, hearing, vision, dental, or fitness. Regence also has connections for programs with infertility, pet care, funerals, allergies, and pediatrics. If one of these stands out to you, you can get involved with the program and hopefully pay less for the medical expenses that you already have in these areas.

Regence is a promoter of member health and provides these incentives to show you that. There are also benefits like health coaches, the 24/7 online nurse, and support for members who have chronic health problems.

Helpful App

Wellero is a convenient feature too. It's the name for Regence's mobile app and allows members to make payments even right after a doctor's visit. This might be an advantage if it prevents you from forgetting to make payments, and it keeps you connected to the status of your account.

Customer Service

Regence emphasizes the use of proper ethics, which translates into the way it does business and the way it treats its customers. Whether you're a member or not, Regence provides several lines of communication to get answers to your questions. As you would expect, you can email the company, call using one of the several phone numbers provided, and even mail in feedback or any forms you want to submit that way.

There is also a live chat option. Under the "Shop Plans" link on the company's homepage, you will find a link to the live chat tool, which you can use during regular business hours. This is really helpful for getting both basic and detailed information about the company's plans.

For members, there's also a dedicated phone number you can call with questions about your benefits or account. You can also use the 24/7 online nurse for questions that might come up at less convenient hours. Also to the company's credit, it provides several resources that explain what health insurance is, how a deductible works, the difference between the emergency room and urgent care, and more. These are terms we throw around a lot but may not fully understand.

Once you're paying for medical bills, however, it's crucial to know the difference. Providing educational resources like these are another way that Regence shows its customers that it prizes ethics, transparency, and the security of its customers. The company would do well to make their live chat feature a little more visible from the company home page.

Furthermore, it might help customers to know which plans they do and don't provide. You have to go looking to find this information out, and since Regence doesn't provide every type of health plan, you might waste time looking for this and then find out that Regence can't even provide what you need. This would enhance the customer service they provide. But on the whole, their customer service tools are helpful.

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The Bad

  • Limited Customer Insight
  • Location and Availability
  • Transparency
  • No Medicaid or Short-Term Plans

Limited Customer Insight

Compared to other health insurers, Regence has a small number of reviews on Best Company. Reviewers have mixed experiences with Regence, which also makes it difficult to give a clear recommendation based on the customer experience.

However, Regence is a subsidiary of BlueCross BlueShield, a highly-rated and well-known health insurer.

Location and Availability

It's important to know right away that if you don't live in Idaho, Washington, Oregon, or Utah, then Regence isn't an option. You will have to find another insurer.
Regence's health plans cover only those areas, even though the parent company, BlueCross BlueShield, is much more widespread. That significantly limits the number of customers Regence can serve.

Transparency

Regence is upfront about the Medicare options it offers and it's easy to tell that its plans include PPOs, HMOs, and HSAs. However, it's hard to find the details about the plans offered without first providing your location and some basic personal information, like your date of birth. It's not unrealistic that your personal situation would determine your health plan options, but it would be nice if this information was a bit more accessible without disclosing your information.

No Medicaid or Short-Term Plans

Regence has a sister company called LifeMap, and this company takes care of Medicaid plans or dental plans. As for Regence itself, however, they do not offer standalone dental plans, Medicaid, or even short-term health insurance.

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The Bottom Line

Regence provides good health insurance plan options for individuals living in Washington, Idaho, Utah, and Oregon. Regence has a lot to offer, especially for members. You'll have lots of resources to check a claim status, look up providers, pay medical bills, get medical advice, and more.

Regence is worth exploring further if you need PPOs, HMOs, HSAs, or Medicare. If you're looking for short-term insurance or Medicaid, however, you need to look for a different company, since Regence doesn't provide these plans. For any customer who does work with Regence, it offers decades of experience in this industry.

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Star Rating

3.0

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30 Reviews

Review Breakdown

5 grade

27%

4 grade

27%

3 grade

3%

2 grade

3%

1 grade

40%

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YoYoMa Smithfield, UT

The worst insurance company out there! I've had to use them due to my husband changing jobs and this being our only option. I have NEVER had to call an insurance company as much as Blue Cross Blue Shield. 14 years ago I remember having to call them many times over denied claims and now it's the same thing. They are telling me I need to pay for certain claims but I swear they should be covered yet, 4 months into this year's plan (began July 1) they still don't have the book available. I asked the agent if it was because they were waiting to see what kind of claims they are getting and what they want to deny coverage to and what things people were fighting to get paid for. She stated they were proofing it to make sure there weren't any errors. 4 months into a plan and they are STILL proofing it for errors? It should be almost the same as last year's booklet. If it isn't then they are totally yanking everybody's chain. And, 4 months to proof? They should have this done BEFORE the deadline of June 30 to be transparent to their customers. Here I am, over 4 months waiting for these things to be paid and I can't even check my coverage without the hassle of actually calling them and waiting forever to speak to somebody? This company is ALL HOOPS! If you are fine with hoops then, go for it. I guess companies like this insurance because if people aren't jumping through hoops at Regence it means they won't jump through hoops in their company and cause any friction. They have various branches for different states and when each state's CEO makes in the tens of millions annually, you know Regence is just raking it in. For a non-profit they seem VERY for profit. I just want an insurance company that pays what they should pay without me having to call them and refile. And sometimes they pay a claim and send me the check, then I have to pay the company! What? Then I get companies hounding me saying that Regence paid me but I haven't found the check so I have to call Regence to send me another one...hoops, hoops, hoops. If you do end up having to go with Regence you NEED to look at every single claim. Many are paid correctly but they are hoping that you don't look closely. Make sure you talk to the providers sending you bills. If you are waiting for the booklet of benefits like me, Regence is hoping you will just pay them and then forget to recheck your claims when (or even if) you ever get your booklet. I am going to ask my providers to wait or refile until I get my benefit booklet. And when I do, I need to compare it to the year before to see what benefits they have taken away from my plan (and how much proofing needed to be done HAHA!!!)

3 weeks ago

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Erin Bassi Sacramento, CA

I live in Ca and my old employer headquarters were in WA so I got stuck with this crappy insurance. Not only was it expensive. I paid my deductible but they find sneaky ways to not cover certain things. Not to mention they have no legend for codes and don’t expect people to question their ethics. I had my daughter Feb 2019 and then Sept 2020 they sent a letter saying break in coverage when my daughter was a newborn. No one was helpful over the phone until I schooled a gentleman about the laws Affordable Care Act & Erin’s Act and I proved to them I never had a break in coverage then this one nice lady took care of it and fixed it. Then get another letter Nov 2020 and don’t open it until Jan 2021 thinking just reprocessing the claim then now they are saying the refund checks they sent I owe them back close to $600 because duplicated a claim. My biggest red flag is this should been caught and fixed all at the end of 2019 not late 2020...sketchy! I’ll be doing my own audit too

9 months ago

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Alex Newhouse Granger, WA

My family of 4 pays Regence Blue Shield about $1400 a month for coverage. We have almost a $13,000 deductible. I have serious asthma and absolutely need some medications to survive. They pay for none of it. My wife had to have an emergency D&C, they refused to pay for any of it and we nearly went bankrupt. We basically pay 1400 a month for Regence to negotiate our medical bills down and pay nothing towards them. And they do this limited action only when the provider is in network, even if the procedure is something like an emergency D&C. Why do I need to pay Regence 1400 a month to negotiate my bills down and pay nothing? I can do that! Regence Blue Shield as a company is immoral, disgusting, ridiculous, and cares nothing about people. As a conservative, I now support a single payer system. Regence Blue Shield has show me the light. It has shown me the true intentions and nature of the health insurance industry and their soulless lobbyists. I, along with MANY others in my community, will be dropping Regence Blue Shield at open enrollment in favor of personal health savings accounts. At least we can use what we pay in and negotiate on our own terms. Congress - democrats and republicans - and the insurance industry is where the blame needs to be placed. The more people drop health insurance the more health insurance companies and the health care industry will struggle to survive, and this is the only way Americans can fight back now. Join me.

3 years ago

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Huntington Vancouver, WA

They were all too happy to cash the $1800 check for insurance and send me an email explaining my coverage and that it was active, but then when I went to doctors office I was told I didn't have insurance and my appointment was cancelled. This all happened because whoever types in policy number felt like taking a break and was "behind schedule" and therefore it shows I didn't have insurance. This was a really important appointment and because you all are LAZY I now have to wait. No one took responsibility and no one apologized or tried to make it right!!!! There is going to come a time where health insurance companies will not be allowed to hold us hostage and dictate our health. I forgot the part where you need an M.D. to work at a health Insurance company.

3 years ago

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Chelsea Stewart Salt Lake City, UT

My husband had this insurance a few years ago and came down with an unexpected case of Meningitis. Regence kept giving the hospital the run around concerning billing and payment. We thought we had everything resolved until 3 YEARS LATER they sent us a bill for an additional $1,000 they wanted us to pay for the meningitis. We tried talking to the hospital about, we tried talking to the insurance about it, they were TERRIBLE, so unhelpful, basically just demanding we pay something we thought was completely resolved. Finally we found someone at the Hospital who told us what they were doing was illegal and they helped us to resolve the situation. We are so happy to be off of Regence and with Select Health.

4 years ago

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Becky Lorash Spokane, WA

This is the worst insurance I've ever had. I've been unemployed for 7 months now because they keep finding ridiculous reasons to deny my claims which are backed by my physicians. I'm getting ready to hire an attorney and file a law suit for lost wages, pain, and suffering.

8 months ago

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Steve Chadwick West Jordan, UT

Regence is a good company at taking your money and denying claims. I am up to 7 appeals now. I pay $26,000 a year for this insurance and it is the worst I have experience. I now have a gov't appointed advocate because I am sick and tired of all the lies they tell me. They change their story every week of what is happening. I have nothing good to say about this company.

3 years ago

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Wendy Morgan La Center, WA

Obtained insurance with need to stay with my Neuroligist after Husbands retirement. Neuros practice is at OHSU. The specialist is in network, but where he provides service is not covered. Leaving me without my much needed treatment that I've been on for 3 years for MS. through Blue Cross Blue Shield Texas!

4 years ago

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Z Idaho Falls, ID

They wouldn't cover my counseling, so I lost my therapist, and then fell back into a deep suicidal depression. Thanks alot.

8 months ago

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Derek Sutherland

Regence online support is a very frustrating service. I am often locked out of my account and unable to get in contact with any phone support as their hours are poor. I would not use regence if I were the purchaser.

5 years ago

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Jennifer Perry Providence, UT

After marginally covering a bill, to which they only applied their "allowed" amount to deductible and out if pocket costs, they sent me a bill asking for money back. I'm not the only one they have done this too.

5 years ago

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Kelly Warren Szymanski Hood River, OR

Regence will not cover my diabetic medication Januvia until my deductible is met. This medicine is over $400 per month.

5 years ago