Highmark Health posts record 6-month performance with $505M operating surplus

Pittsburgh-based Highmark Health, the parent company of insurer Highmark and Allegheny Health Network, reported an operating gain of $505 million in the first six months of fiscal year 2017, compared to $35 million the same period last year.

"Highmark Health delivered its strongest financial performance for the six-month period ending June 30 since the formation of Highmark in 1996," Karen Hanlon, executive vice president and CFO of Highmark, said.

Highmark attributed its financial turnaround to improvements in its government health plan business, as well as its commercial and senior health plan segments. The company's nealry 5 million-member health plan achieved an operating gain of $480 million in the six months ended June 30, up $399 million compared to the same period a year prior, mostly fueled by its government business.

On the provider side, Highmark's Allegheny Health Network in Pittsburgh saw its strongest financial performance since its establishment. AHN recorded $28 million in excess revenue over expenses in the first six months of this year, an improvement of $47 million from the same period in 2016.

While intentional enrollment reductions decreased Highmark's operating revenues year-over year by $100 million to $9.1 billion in the six-month period, at the same time the organization's expenses dropped $50 million. Highmark attributed the decrease to reduced costs related to its Epic EHR and other technology implementations.

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