August 22, 2012 |
Aetna Inc., a major health insurer in the Philadelphia region, has agreed to pay $5.7 billion to buy competitor Coventry Healthcare Inc. in a bid to expand its Medicaid business and other operations before major provisions of the Affordable Care Act take effect, the companies said Monday. In 2014, many states are expected to expand Medicaid to cover a significant portion of the currently uninsured, increasing business opportunities for companies that run those programs for states.
June 18, 2012 |
Several of the nation's largest health insurers drew attention last week by saying they would maintain certain popular consumer provisions in the 2010 health reform law even if the Supreme Court strikes down the statute in a ruling expected this month. Humana Inc., Aetna Inc., and UnitedHealth Group Inc. said they would continue offering preventive health services, such as immunizations with no direct out-of-pocket costs for consumers, allow children to stay on their parents' plans until they turn 26, and keep the third-party appeals process for denials of coverage mandated by the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. But a local employee benefits expert said the insurers' announcements were probably not as significant as they first appeared to be. "I think it was really just a PR move," said Joseph McGinty, vice president of employee benefits consulting at the Graham Co., a Philadelphia employee benefits and insurance firm.
April 17, 2012 |
Independence Blue Cross, the largest health insurer in the Philadelphia region, said Tuesday that its 2011 net income soared 49 percent, to $314.8 million. The company's profit margin of 3.4 percent was its biggest in at least 10 years. "I'm proud of the progress we've made," said IBC's president and chief executive officer, Daniel J. Hilferty. The insurer has rebounded from two years of losses, in 2008 and 2009. Glen Philips, an IBC customer, said it bothered him to hear of IBC's strong profits, given the heavy cost of buying insurance for 40-plus employees at Philips Bros.
April 8, 2012 |
Independence Blue Cross, the biggest health insurer in the Philadelphia region, added 45,020 members last year, the first growth since 2008 for the Center City nonprofit, which serves nearly 3.1 million people. IBC has yet to release comprehensive financial results for 2011, but president and chief executive Daniel J. Hilferty said the company continued its recovery from losses in 2008 and 2009 and expected to report an improvement over 2010, when it had a profit margin of 2.2 percent.
March 17, 2012
In the Region Medical group back with Aetna Abington Medical Specialists , a large cardiology practice, is back in the Aetna network. The contract between the health insurer and the group, which has 17 cardiologists and two internists, expired Jan. 1. Adam Cohen, a doctor in the practice, said the group was back in the Aetna network as of Friday. He said he could not discuss terms of the contract because of a confidentiality agreement. The contract dispute, which focused on reimbursement rates, affected up to 10,000 Aetna subscribers.
January 29, 2012 |
Up to 10,000 Aetna subscribers are caught in the middle of a contract fight between the insurance company and a 19-member cardiology group that says it provides most of the heart care at Abington Memorial Hospital. Negotiation battles between hospitals or doctors and insurers that go down to the wire - and beyond it - have become more common in recent years as insurance companies have faced more pressure from subscribers and employers to curb costs. The contract between Aetna and Abington Medical Specialists (AMS)
January 12, 2012 |
For the first time, some of the region's largest employers have formed a coalition to fight relentless increases in health-care costs by improving the quality of care. The 10 employer members of the Greater Philadelphia Business Coalition on Health provide health insurance for 100,000 people in the region, and they plan to use that leverage to create report cards and other tools to reshape health care. "If we all get together, we have a little more power, a little more clout," said Dottie McFalls, a principal in human resources at the Vanguard Group, which employs 11,000 in Chester County.
December 7, 2011 |
At a time when health-insurance premiums continue their steady rise, Pennsylvania legislators will likely pass twin bills in the Senate and House that will broaden the state Insurance Department's ability to review rate increases. That sounds as if it should be good news to health advocates such as Antoinette Kraus and Sharon Ward, who have been tracking the legislation in Harrisburg. The bills are set to come to a vote Wednesday. But it's not good news, Kraus and Ward say. "If this law passes, fewer rate reviews will be scrutinized," said Ward, director of the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center in Harrisburg.
July 27, 2011 |
How's your health these days? Aetna Inc. said Wednesday that more members are refraining from using health-care services. That was part of what led to a healthy 9 percent increase in second-quarter income. The Hartford-based company, which has thousands of employees at the old US Healthcare offices in Blue Bell, has benefited by a trend that sees consumers skipping doctor visits and elective procedures during a recession. Aetna earned $536.7 million, or $1.39 a share, in the three months ended June 30, up from $491 million, or $1.14 a share, in the comparable period a year ago. Adjusted earnings were $1.35 per share.