Health Maintenance Organization (HMO)

In most HMO Plans, you generally must get your care and services from providers in your plan's network, like:

  • Doctors
  • Other health care providers
  • Hospitals

You may also need to get a referral from your primary care doctor. Find and compare HMO Plans in your area.

In HMO Plans, you generally must get your care and services from providers in the plan's network, except:

  • Emergency care
  • Out-of-area urgent care
  • Out-of-area dialysis

In some plans, you may be able to go out-of-network for certain services. But, it usually costs less if you get your care from a network provider. This is called an HMO with a point-of-service (POS) option.


In most cases, yes, you need to choose a primary care doctor in HMO Plans.

In most cases you have to get a referral to see a specialist in HMO Plans. Certain services, like yearly screening mammograms, don't require a referral.


What else do I need to know about this type of plan?

  • If your doctor or other health care provider leaves the plan, your plan will notify you. You can choose another doctor in the plan.
  • If you get health care outside the plan's , you may have to pay the full cost.
  • It's important that you follow the plan's rules, like getting prior approval for a certain service when needed.