10 Things to Know About Aetna

Aetna's company name is inspired by Mt.Etna — an 11,000-foot volcano on the eastern shores of Sicily — which was the most active volcano in Europe. Living up to its name, Aetna has become one of the nation's largest insurance companies, providing insurance to roughly 44 million people.

Here are 10 things to know about Aetna:

1. Aetna was founded in 1853, and Eliphalet A. Bulkeley was the company's first president.

2. Mark T. Bertolini currently serves as chairman, president and CEO of Aetna. Mr. Bertolini assumed the role of CEO in 2010.

3. Aetna has roughly 47,500 employees.

4. As of March, Aetna had 22.7 million medical members, 14.6 dental members and 14.2 million pharmacy members. The company provides benefits through employers in all 50 states to Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries.

5. Aetna's stock has rallied 16.4 percent this year. The company's net income rose 36 percent in the first quarter of this year, from $490.1 million in the first three months of 2013 to $665.5 million this year. One of the main contributors to Aetna's increase in net income was the insurer's acquisition of Coventry Health Care. Additionally, higher underwriting margins in Aetna's underlying healthcare businesses contributed to the increase in income. 

6. Aetna has launched several ACOs this year. In May, San Antonio-based Baptist Health System, HealthTexas Medical Group and Aetna announced an accountable care collaboration and the introduction of the Aetna Whole HealthSM product in the San Antonio area. In June, Aetna and Cincinnati, Ohio-based Mercy Health announced they are forming an ACO.

7. Aetna has also formed patient-centered medical homes. Aetna and Purchase, N.Y.-based WESTMED Medical Group were able to reduce hospital admissions among their patients by 35 percent in the first year after forming their patient-centered medical home. WESTMED physicians also reportedly met or exceeded 90 percent of their targeted goals for diabetes management and screenings, cancer screenings and heart disease.

8. As more people enroll in high-deductible health plans and shoulder a greater portion of the cost of care, healthcare providers face an increasing demand to be open about their prices. In 2010, Aetna launched its Member Payment Estimator. The online tool lets members approximate their actual cost for medical services based on the providers they choose, their medical conditions and their plan designs.

9. Aetna participates in Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act health insurance marketplaces. In May, Aetna reported it had more than 600,000 exchange enrollees.

10. In ReviveHealth's eighth annual National Payor Survey 18 percent of hospitals said Aetna was the "worst" payer. UnitedHealthcare received the poorest ranking, with about 42 percent of hospital leaders saying it was the worst to do business with. ReviveHealth's findings were based on responses from 203 hospital and health system executives about their feelings toward several health insurers. Of the 203 respondents, more than 25 percent were CEOs, CFOs, COOs or other top executives.

More Articles on Aetna:

Aetna, Mercy Health Partner For Accountable Care 
Aetna, Fresenius Medical Care Enter Into Collaborative Care Agreement 
Aetna, Baptist Health System and HealthTexas Link Up for Accountable Care 

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