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COVID-19 Coronavirus Updates and Guidance

The County is taking a number of actions to keep residents safe and minimize the spread of COVID-19. Find status information for County operations and services.

Cigna High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP)

Effective January 1, 2021, and in partnership with Cigna and Benefit Strategies, Baltimore County will be offering an additional medical plan option for active employees and non-Medicare retirees. This High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP) can help you take control of your health and your costs.

The Cigna HDHP can be combined with a Health Savings Account (HSA), allowing you to pay for eligible out-of-pocket healthcare expenses with pretax dollars. The Cigna HDHP offers you a typical medical plan with a higher deductible—$2,500 for individuals or $5,000 for family per year. In addition, the HDHP has lower premiums than a typical health insurance plan. For individuals who don’t anticipate many medical expenses for the upcoming year, it makes sense to minimize your premiums and choose an HDHP as there’s a good chance you’ll save money over the year. Remember, in-network preventative care such as annual physicals and routine screenings will be covered at 100 percent with no deductible.

Please refer to the 2021 Active Benefits Guide (PDF) for additional information, including a comprehensive plan design.

Options for Care

  • Primary Care Physician (PCP)—You can decide to choose a PCP as your personal doctor to help coordinate care and act as a personal health advocate. It’s recommended, but not required.
  • In-Network—Choose to see doctors or other health professionals who are in the Cigna network to keep your costs lower and eliminate paperwork.
  • No Referral Specialist Care—If you need to see a specialist, you don’t need a referral. You may need precertification for hospital stays and some types of outpatient care. Use in-network health care professionals, and there’s no paperwork for you to fill out.
  • Out-of-Network—You have the freedom to see doctors or use facilities that are not part of the Cigna network, but your costs will be higher and you may need to file a claim.
  • Emergency and Urgent Care—When you need care, you have coverage.
  • 24/7 Service—Whenever you need us, customer service representatives are available to take your call: 1-800-896-0948.

Plan Pros and Cons



Lower Monthly Premium/Plan Contribution
If you anticipate only needing preventive care, then the lower premiums/plan contributions that often come with an HDHP may help you save money in the long run.

Higher Deductible
You are required to pay for your medical care out-of-pocket up to your deductible amount before your health plan begins to help pay for covered costs. The deductible for this plan is $2,500 for individuals and $5,000 for families.

Tax-Advantaged Spending Account
The Cigna HDHP can be paired with an HSA through Benefit Strategies to help pay for eligible medical expenses.
Costly Out-of-Pocket Medical Expenses
If nonpreventative medical care is needed.

Helpful HDHP Definitions

  • Coinsurance—After you’ve reached your deductible, you and your plan share some of your medical costs. The portion of covered expenses you are responsible for is called coinsurance.
  • Deductible—A flat dollar amount you must pay out of your own pocket before your plan begins to pay for covered services.
  • Out-of-Pocket Maximum—Specific limits for the total amount you will pay out of your own pocket before your plan coinsurance percentage no longer applies. Once you meet these maximums, your plan then pays 100 percent.
Revised October 23, 2020         


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