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Editor’s nook: Fierce Well being Payer’s high 10 tales of 2021

UnitedHealth Group introduced its plans to amass information analytics firm Change Healthcare in March, and, since then, that just about $8 billion deal has dominated headlines in each the insurance coverage and know-how wings of the trade.

The nation’s largest insurer was a fixture on our high 10 most-read tales of 2021, accounting for 4 headlines and a slew of others that fell simply wanting our record. Different UnitedHealth headlines that resonated with you this 12 months included CEO Andrew Witty’s plans to extra successfully unite its well being plan with Optum in addition to the corporate’s new chief medical officer.

One other key matter for 2021? Medicare Benefit, each by way of the market itself and relating to a few of its greatest gamers. Humana, an MA fixture, stars in two of our high headlines for the 12 months, as did the most recent on MA premiums heading into the 2022 plan 12 months.

RELATED: 2022 forecast: Medicare Benefit is the trade’s hottest market. Do not count on that to vary subsequent 12 months

Here is the record of the ten most learn tales for this 12 months:

1. UnitedHealthcare cuts Envision from its supplier community

UnitedHealth’s ongoing feud with doctor staffing corporations has been a working theme for the 12 months, with the January information that the insurer would ax Envision from its community topping our most-read record. UHC can also be embroiled in a heated authorized back-and-forth with TeamHealth.

2. Humana rumored to be eyeing Centene takeover, once more: report

The inventory market was once more atwitter about rumors that Humana might purchase authorities insurance coverage large Centene. Related rumors swirled two years in the past, which have been summarily shutdown. As of now, nothing has come of those rumors, however we’ll be watching this intently.

3. Centene launching organizational restructuring effort, will cull 3K staff, 1.5K open jobs

Following the closure of its acquisition of rival WellCare Well being Plans, Centene has launched into a quest to reexamine its enterprise strains and deal with probably the most high-value points. As a part of that, the insurer introduced it will restructure its group and remove 1000’s of positions and open jobs.

4. 4 of the largest healthcare developments CVS Well being says to look at in 2021

Since its acquisition of Aetna was accomplished in 2018, CVS Well being’s attain sprawls into many segments of the healthcare trade. Consultants on the healthcare large outlined a number of key developments to look at, together with a looming psychological well being disaster and the increasing function of pharmacists.

5. Why UnitedHealth sees mixed powers of its well being plan, Optum as a aggressive benefit

Andrew Witty was named CEO of UnitedHealth Group in February, and, after getting into the function, he is outlined a number of instances this 12 months his ambitions for extra successfully uniting the strengths of its UnitedHealthcare and Optum companies. Optum, particularly, has untapped potential, he stated.

6. UnitedHealth Group faucets Wilson as new chief medical officer

In additional UnitedHealth govt information, the corporate introduced late final month that Margaret-Mary Wilson, M.D., will step into the function of chief medical officer and that she’ll put a selected deal with addressing well being inequity. Her predecessor, Robert Migliori, M.D., will retire.

7. Aetna launching nationwide digital major care answer

Over the summer season, Aetna teamed up with Teladoc to launch a nationwide digital major care choice. Digital major care and virtual-first well being plans are shaping as much as be a key pattern to look at within the coming 12 months as extra payers take into account such profit designs.

8. Medicare Benefit premiums to say no barely in 2022, Half D to rise by almost 5%

Medicare Benefit is the most well liked market within the insurance coverage trade proper now, and information from that phase is all the time in demand. In September, the Biden administration stated that MA premiums have been set to say no for the 2022 plan 12 months, whereas Half D premiums would enhance.

9. Humana to pilot new tech-enabled continual care administration platform

Humana kick-started a pilot for a brand new tech-y platform for continual care administration. Humana Care Help will harness enhanced information analytics to create an built-in, personalised expertise for members, the corporate instructed Fierce Healthcare solely.

10. UnitedHealth, Change Healthcare enter timing settlement with DOJ over megamerger

Updates within the UnitedHealth-Change merger have been plentiful this 12 months, because the Division of Justice (DOJ) investigated the deal on antitrust grounds. The 2 corporations agreed that they’d not full the deal till the DOJ wrapped up its investigation.

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