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Well-being enhancement company Healthways (HWAY - Analyst Report) and CDPHP recently revealed that they have extended by three years until 2015 their commitment to provide Healthways’ SilverSneakers Fitness Program. The understanding between the two parties has been in existence since 2004. The SilverSneakers curriculum may be availed by over 30,000 qualified CDPHP Medicare Advantage enrollees in 24 counties of New York state.    

The most recent CDPHP SilverSneakers annual member survey reveals favorable results. As per the findings in 2011, about two-thirds of CDPHP and SilverSneakers members stated their health to be either very good or excellent. This metric is much higher than the nation-wide figure of 30% for the elderly.   

Set up in 1984, CDPHP is a non-profit health plan which provides health insurance schemes to enrollees in 24 counties of New York.

The Healthways model encourages people to make favorable lifestyle changes that lead to enhanced well-being, reduced healthcare costs, improved performance and economic value for customers. The company has invested in technology platforms that provide scalable support with large populations. It has tie-ups with a large proportion of U.S. health plans and counts many millions of lives in its customer base.

Due to its unique scalable business model, Healthways shares may present a long-term investment opportunity, although it faces many challenges in the short term.

Healthways is the leader in a strategically critical and rapidly evolving part of the health care services market. Its fitness program (SilverSneakers Fitness Program) for seniors is available at over 15,000 centers across the U.S. and is available to over nine million eligible enrollees through Medicare Supplement, Medicare Advantage plans and group retiree plans. Healthways competes with Express Scripts Holding Company (ESRX - Analyst Report) among others.

We currently have an Outperform recommendation on Healthways. The stock retains a Zacks #1 Rank, which translates into a short-term Strong Buy rating.

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