Chelsey Tucker graduated with a Bachelor of History degree from Metropolitan State University in 2019. She now writes about insurance with her specialty being life insurance and has been quoted on Help Smart Phone and MEL Magazine.

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years. He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Mar 19, 2020

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Aetna vs. National Guardian Life Insurance

Choosing health insurance can be a major financial decision. However, knowing what health insurance providers offer for benefits can determine exactly what kind of health insurance you need and how much you need. Aetna and National Guardian Life Insurance Company are well-known insurance providers and offer quality health insurance to individuals and families.

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Aetna is one of the best known health insurance companies in the United States. They provide health-related insurance products, including dental insurance, pharmacy, behavioral health, life and disability plans. In addition to providing coverage for individuals and families, they also provide insurance to college students, employers and expatriates.

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Aetna Open Access Managed Choice

Aetna Open Access Managed Choice health insurance is available to individuals and families. This plan combines the benefits of both an HMO or PPO managed care program. Members are able to receive coverage through any provider participating in the PPO network. However, they also have the freedom to receive care from non-network providers for reduced benefit amounts.

Paperwork is minimal if you receive medical treatment from network providers. Benefits include coverage for doctor visits, routine physicals, x-rays and lab work. Additionally, prescriptions are covered and a referral is not needed to see an in-network specialist.

Aetna Preferred Provider Option (PPO) Plan

Aetna offers a PPO plan that allows you to pay lower premiums but still receive good medical benefits. There are two levels of benefit coverage – if you receive medical treatment from providers within the preferred provider network, you have lower out-of-pocket costs, including lower copayments and deductible amounts. If you receive medical treatment from medical providers outside of the network, your out-of-pockets expenses will be higher.

With Aetna’s PPO plan, you can see any specialist within the network without a referral. Additionally, the plan covers routine doctor visits, emergency and hospital care and annual physicals. Prescription medications are covered, as is specialist and outpatient surgery. You do not need to select a primary care physician (PCP) at the time you apply for coverage.

Aetna Medicare Plans

In addition to offering health insurance for individuals and families, they also offer a number of health insurance plans for individuals on Medicare. These plans include Medicare Advantage plans, Medigap and Medicare prescription coverage plans.

Aetna Medicare Advantage programs provide you with all the coverage that is included with traditional Medicare Parts A and B. However, Aetna Medical Advantage plans also provide you with additional vision and hearing benefits that are not included with traditional Medicare. You can also include prescription coverage, and roll all of your Medicare benefits into one plan with a single identification card and a single monthly premium.

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Medicare Supplement Plans

Aetna Medicare Supplemental plans provide you with coverage for medical expenses that are not covered by Medicare A and B. Medicare Supplement programs give you the ability to see any doctor you choose. However, this coverage is not available in all states.

Medicare Prescription Plans

Aetna Medicare Prescription Drug plans are stand-alone heath insurance plans that you can purchase without purchasing other types of Medicare health coverage. They work in addition to Medicare parts A and B and can be added to a supplemental plan or a private fee-for-service plan that does not have prescription medication coverage.

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National Guardian Life Insurance

National Guardian Life Insurance is part of the NGL Insurance Group. It was established in 1910 and is rated A- by AM Best and Api by Standard & Poors, two of the highest ratings given to insurance companies. In addition to health insurance, National Guardian also offers preneed funeral planning coverage and final burial expense insurance.

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Group Plans

National Guardian provides supplemental health insurance for groups, including limited medical benefits, pharmacy, vision, dental, group life and illness-specific coverage. These plans are intended to be used as a supplement to traditional health insurance and are offered to employees as optional additional health insurance coverage.

RxPlus Prescription Coverage

RxPlus is a prescription discount program offered by National Guardian. It is a free program for individuals who have purchased a policy from National Guardian. It provides significant discounts of up to 55 percent at participating pharmacies. Additionally, they have a mail pharmacy program for additional savings.

The RxPlus program includes a 15 percent on diabetic management supplies and medications delivered to your home. Additionally, you can receive between 45 and 65 percent discounts on vision services, including exams, contact lenses, frames and glasses. Hearing services are also included with the discount program and you can receive up to 30 percent off of hearing exams and 50 to 60 percent off of hearing aid equipment.

Preneed Insurance

One aspect of health that many people are now thinking about is funeral and final expenses. National Guardian offers plans that help plan this final phase of your health. Preneed plans allow you to set aside money to pay for your funeral and preplan your funeral arrangements.

This kind of preplanning can make it easier for families, since death benefits increase over time and it becomes possible to have a funeral immediately without waiting for probate funds to become available. With National Guardian preneed plans, you are provided with all the necessary information to plan for your funeral, including important document instructions, choosing a casket, memorial service details and cremation or burial arrangements.

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Final Expense Insurance

Final expense planning is also offered by National Guardian. This form of life insurance specifically allows you to set aside funds to cover the expenses related to your funeral. National Guardian offers two plans – NGL Funeral Expense Trust and NGL Estate Planning Trust.

The Funeral Expense Trust allows you to set aside funds that are protected from the Medicaid spend-down up to $15,000. Funeral expenses are paid first out of the trust and the remaining balance goes to your estate. The Estate Planning Trust program excludes funs from the Medicaid spend-town after the trust has been established for five years. Funeral costs are paid out of this trust and any remaining funds go to your estate. The maximum amount you can put in this trust is $50,000.

Health Insurance Needs Across the Lifespan

There are many aspects to health that affect a person from birth to death. With careful planning, you can have health coverage for your entire life that can provide you with financial protect for almost any life event. Both Aetna and National Guardian are highly-rated insurance companies with established records of quality insurance services and together, they can provide you with excellent health insurance coverage for all of your life needs.

Before choosing any health insurance coverage, ask your current doctor what companies they accept health insurance from and decide if you are willing or able to change doctors. Also, evaluate your medication needs with your pharmacist and determine if your expenses will increase with new coverage.

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