- Colorado-based Rocky Mountain Health Plans (RMHP) is being sold to the largest healthcare provider in the U.S. and the state - UnitedHealthcare, The Daily Sentinel reports.
- UnitedHealthcare said it hopes to "restore the organization's capital base and help ensure that it becomes a stronger, more sustainable health plan over the long term," according to a report from The Denver Post.
- The news comes only a few days after the U.S. Department of Defense ousted UnitedHealthcare from managing the Tricare program in its new contracts - valued at $58 billion.
Healthcare reform has lead to a myriad of consolidations in the country's health insurance market. The DOJ went to court just last week attempting to block Anthem's $48 billion acquisition of Cigna as well as Aetna $34 billion purchase of Humana, citing reduced competition and increased prices.
But smaller acquisitions that sometimes seem to go under the radar also have an impact on the evolving landscape, as noted by The New York Times.
Rocky Mountain HMO was among the several insurers that made a steep 2017 rate hike request (34.6%) earlier this year after facing significant post-ACA financial losses.
RMHP is reportedly dropping five of the six Connect for Health Colorado -- the state's health insurance market -- plans it offered. UnitedHealthcare, among several other insurers, announced it would no longer offer individual insurance exchange plans in various states, including Colorado, starting in 2017.
The Colorado insurer and UnitedHealthcare have been working with four other insurers - Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, Cigna, Colorado Access, Colorado Choice Health Plans - and Colorado's Medicaid program to improve the integration of behavioral and physical healthcare via payment measures and data sharing.
Now, the nation's largest insurer wants to help stabilize RMHP financials with an investment. In exchange, UnitedHealthcare will have a presence in Colorado's Medicaid market as well as access to parts of the state that it had not previously been able to reach, The Denver Post reported.
Nonprofit RMHP will have to convert to a for-profit in order to complete the deal, which is could be completed by year's end if it receives regulatory approval from the Colorado Division of Insurance and the state's attorney general.