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Who’s running the Medicare Advantage show?

Becker’s Hospital Review’s March 31 story ranks Medicare Advantage for-profit players.

Becker’s Hospital Review recently ran down the top for-profit insurers with the largest national share of Medicare Advantage members, based on a report by the Chartis Group, a healthcare management consulting firm. There aren’t any surprises here, but the numbers are still pretty mind-boggling.

Topping the list are the health insurers UnitedHealthcare and Humana, with the largest national share of Medicare Advantage members, at 27.4 and 18.2 percent, respectively. But it looks like Humana doesn’t intend to be in second place for long. As we’ve noted before, the company is growing its Medicaid Advantage health services arm, aiming to ramp up its Medicare Advantage business by another 12% this year. That would add up to more than 5 million enrollees and would make the insurer responsible for a huge share of the care for those members.

Of course, Humana doesn’t have the best reputation at the moment. The company has been in hot water recently, in the wake of a class-action lawsuit filed against the insurer by its own employees. Humana agreed to a $17 million settlement to compensate its home health employees for unpaid overtime. Let’s hope that the way Humana treats its employees isn’t any indicator of how it treats its members—because millions of new members will soon be putting their health in Humana’s hands.

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