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Humana (HUM) Inks Deal to Better Serve Members in Kansas Area

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Zacks Equity Research
·4 min read
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Humana Inc. HUM recently inked a deal with Prime Healthcare to offer in-network access to most area Humana Medicare Advantage and commercial plan members at two Prime Healthcare hospitals in Kansas. However, terms of the transaction were kept under wraps.

Prime Healthcare is a leading health system with 46 hospitals in 14 states.
Effective now, the deal adds in-network access to local Humana Medicare Advantage Preferred Provider Organization (PPO), Private Fee-for-Service (PFFS) and Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) plan members (apart from Community HMO plan members); and Humana commercial HMO and PPO health plan members (apart from Kansas City PPOx plan members) at Providene Medical Center in Kansas City, KS as well as at Saint John Hospital in Leavenworth, KS.

This deal extends the current network contracts between the leading health insurer and two other Prime Healthcare hospitals in the greater Kansas City region.

This is not the first time that Humana took initiatives to penetrate further in the Kansas area. And this is the perfect time to widen its presence when healthcare is needed maximum among most communities.

Undoubtedly, this move is in line with the health insurance giant’s commitment to improve health benefits for its Medicare members. Recently, it also signed a five-year pact with New York State’s leading healthcare provider Northwell Health that will provide a new line of services and products in the New York metropolitan area.

Humana announced an array of 2021 Medicare product offerings, such as Medicare Advantage and Prescription Drug Plans, etc. Beneficiaries will now be able to choose from 69 new MAPD plans across various additional counties. It also announced the launch of a Medicare Advantage Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) plan in rural communities of 31 counties across the Knoxville, Memphis, Nashville areas. The extension is part of its Tennessee expansion plan for 2021.The health insurance giant will also provide Humana Honor plan in every county across the Tennessee region, which is available for all individuals eligible for Medicare.

With strong partnerships, this lead insurance giant is well-poised for growth on the back of its Medicare business.

Medicare Business and Its Reach

The health insurance giant has been consistent in broadening the scope of Medicare business. The health care provider flaunts a strong Medicare business across the United States where it has been offering at least one Medicare plan across 50 states. Notably, the company has been providing private health plans falling under the Medicare program for more than 30 years.

The COVID-19 outbreak coupled with an aging population in the United States further buoyed demand for the Medicare Advantage plans. In order to relieve the pandemic-induced financial stress from its Medicare Advantage members, the company even waived additional costs for in-network primary care, outpatient behavioral health and telehealth visits for the remainder of this year. Progress in the business line is evident from the 54% Medicare membership rise from 2013 to 2018.

The full-year individual Medicare Advantage membership is now expected to be roughly 375,000 members, higher than the previous band of 330,000-360,000 members. This reflects year-over-year growth of around 10%.

Zacks Rank and Price Performance

Shares of this currently Zacks Rank #4 (Sell) company have surged 35.3% in a year compared with the industry’s growth of 27.6%.

You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Other companies in the same space, such as Centene Corp. CNC, Anthem Inc. ANTM and Molina Healthcare, Inc. MOH have also rallied 31.8%, 19.3% and 80.5%, respectively, in the same time frame.

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