Briefs

Modern Healthcare - - LATE NEWS -

Uni­ver­sal Health Ser­vices, based in King of Prus­sia, Pa., saw a 2% to 3% re­duc­tion in its unin­sured pa­tient vol­umes,

with a com­men­su­rate in­crease in Med­i­caid and commercial vol­umes, as a re­sult of health­care re­form, com­pany of­fi­cials said on an earn­ings call Fri­day. The ef­fect was most pro­nounced in Cal­i­for­nia, which has pushed hard to pro­mote its in­sur­ance ex­changes. The District of Columbia saw strong num­bers, as did Ne­vada, which has had strong Med­i­caid en­roll­ment, the com­pany said. UHS was the first pub­licly traded chain to re­port earn­ings on Thurs­day for a quar­ter that re­flected the im­pact of in­sur­ance ex­pan­sion as of Jan. 1.

Health­care re­form has been a big­ger boost to the bot­tom line at LifePoint Hos­pi­tals than it ex­pected,

the Brent­wood, Tenn.based chain re­ported Fri­day. LifePoint, the small­est pub­licly traded hospi­tal op­er­a­tor, re­ported a 14.9% in­crease in net in­come in the first quar­ter, reach­ing $37.1 mil­lion, com­pared with $32.3 mil­lion dur­ing the prior-year pe­riod. Rev­enue from con­tin­u­ing op­er­a­tions in­creased to $1 bil­lion, up 8.2% from $931.1 mil­lion in the first quar­ter of 2013.

Aetna re­mains wary about ex­pand­ing its pres­ence in pub­lic in­sur­ance ex­changes for 2015 be­cause of lin­ger­ing un­cer­tain­ties about the emerg­ing mar­ket­places, the com­pany’s CEO said. That news came as the Hartford, Conn.-based in­surer re­ported that it sig­nif­i­cantly ex­ceeded profit ex­pec­ta­tions dur­ing the first quar­ter of 2014, and is pro­ject­ing higher earn­ings for the year. Aetna added 230,000 paid mem­bers through the ex­changes, for cov­er­age ef­fec­tive dur­ing the first quar­ter of the year. But that was off­set by a 130,000 re­duc­tion in in­di­vid­ual en­roll­ments out­side of the ex­changes. So far this year, 600,000 in­di­vid­u­als have signed up for Aetna plans through the govern­ment-run mar­ket­places. Of those, roughly 500,000 have fol­lowed through with their first pre­mium pay­ments, the in­surer said.

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