Health Insurance Carrier Options Narrow

by Cathy Miller on August 21, 2012

in Health Insurance

With many employer sponsors of health insurance holding their breath over health reform, the health insurance industry is moving full steam ahead.

Yesterday, Aetna, Inc. announced its plans to acquire Coventry Health Care. Aetna’s $5.7 billion cash-and-stock price ticket adds over 5 million members, and a big boost in Medicare and Medicaid membership.

The merger moves Aetna up to the number three spot, behind United HealthGroup, Inc. and Wellpoint, Inc. According to a 2011 NAIC report, Coventry held the number seven spot and Aetna was number four. 

If You Can’t Beat ‘Em

It appears the company was after a stronger foothold in government plans. Just in time for health reform’s big year in 2014.

Significant provisions of health reform’s Patient Protection and Affordability Act (PPACA) take place in 2014 – most notably, the creation of state insurance exchanges.

The exchanges offer individuals a marketplace for purchasing health insurance. Major insurers are shoring up for the changes that lie ahead.

  • Last month Wellpoint bought Amerigroup that specialized in Medicaid
  • In 2011, CIGNA bought Medicare-focused HealthSpring
  • Humana, Inc. acquired home care/caregiving provider, SeniorBridge
  • United HealthGroup acquired XL Health Corp, a provider of Medicare Advantage plans

Can you spell aging baby boomers?

Covering All the Bases

Insurers are preparing for whatever shakes out from an election year and health care reform.

PPACA combined with the nearly 80 million aging baby boomers, and the shortage of healthcare professionals makes for an interesting future in the heathcare industry.

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Notice of Disclaimer –Cathy Miller is not an attorney or health care provider and cannot provide legal or health care advice. The information provided is for your general background only, and is not intended to constitute legal or health care advice as to your specific circumstances. We recommend you review legislation with legal counsel and visit your physician for health care issues.

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