- A newly-formed subsidiary, Ascension Care Management LLC, intends to purchase Michigan-based U.S. Health and Life Insurance Co. for $50 million, according to documents filed with the Michigan Department of Financial and Insurance Services.
- USHL holds a license in around 20 states, including Michigan, Ohio, Illinois and Indiana, and targets small employers with less than 100 employees.
- The Ascension subsidiary states that its "primary business is to own and operate businesses that are part of the population health management platform of Ascension."
This gives Ascension a more holistic view of its population data, and by extension more control in the management of population health and overall patient costs—something that hospitals are increasingly looking to acquire insurers in order to do. In North Carolina, Cone Health recently jumped into the insurance market, and some speculate that Wake Forest Baptist is a particularly notable candidate to pursue health insurance offerings due to its joint venture with Carolinas HealthCare System: MedCost.
"The acquisition makes a lot of sense," Joseph Aoun, a healthcare lawyer with Nuyen, Tomtishen and Aoun told Crain's Detroit. "Hospitals are now expected to manage population health and owning a health plan provides both infrastructure and a way to connect more directly with insurance purchasers."