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Aetna Enters Into Agreement to Provide Value-Based Care

AET UNH WCG HLTH

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Aetna Inc. (AET - Free Report) recently tied up with Baptist Health & St. Vincent’s HealthCare to provide better care.
 
Per the agreement, a new health insurance option will be made available to employers and employees in Clay, Duval and St. Johns counties. This new commercial health benefit plan –Aetna Whole Health – will improve quality and patient experience along with controlling costs.
 
The partnership will include a network of Baptist Health & St. Vincent’s HealthCare physicians, hospitals and outpatient facilities. Also, Flagler Hospital will be part of the network in St. Johns County.
 
The new plan will is available for fully insured and self-insured employer groups with 51 or more employees. Apart from focusing on disease prevention, the plan will provide complete access to the most advanced medical and surgical treatments available in the region.
 
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This move reflects Aetna’s strategy to provide value-based care that targets better quality instead of quantity. It also aims to enhance coordination between doctors and other care providers. This, in turn, should help in reduction of costs by avoiding duplication of services, enhanced care management programs, disease reduction via preventive measures, improved patient experience through best-in-class care management programs. Also, the plan will ensure better use of technology to enable faster data processing for timely action.
 
Aetna is aggressively working to provide value-based care by developing innovative products and services. Currently approximately 6.2 million Aetna members receive care from doctors committed to the value-based approach. Approximately 40% of Aetna claims payments go to doctors and providers who practice value-based care. In fact, Aetna estimates the figure to increase to 75% by 2020.
 
Aetna carries a Zacks Rank # 3 (Hold). Some better-ranked players in this space are WellCare Health Plans, Inc. (WCG - Free Report) , Nobilis Health Corp. (HLTH - Free Report) and UnitedHealth Group Inc. (UNH - Free Report) . While Wellcare sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), the other two stocks carry a Zacks Rank # 2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
 
WellCare Health Plans has seen a 7.5% rise in the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2016 to $5.01 earnings per share, over the past 60 days. On an average, the company delivered a positive earnings surprise of 29.6% in the trailing four quarters.
 
Nobilis Health has seen a 2.1% rise in the  Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2016 to 48 cents per share, over the past 60 days.
 
UnitedHealth Group has seen a 0.4% rise in the  Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2016 to $7.91 earnings per share, over the past 90 days. On an average, the company delivered a positive earnings surprise of 2.93% in the trailing four quarters.

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