10 Things to Know About Optum

Optum is a health information technology and services firm that is part of UnitedHealth Group. It provides technological, operational and consulting solutions and services to individuals, healthcare organizations, pharmaceutical companies as well as the federal and state governments.

Together UnitedHealthcare and Optum serve more than 85 million individuals worldwide
with a total workforce of more than 160,000 people.

Here are 10 things to know about Optum.

1. Optum's CEO is Larry Renfro, who joined the company in 2009. He previously served as a senior executive at Fidelity Investments and was a member of the Fidelity Executive Committee. John Rex serves as executive vice president and CFO of the company. Prior to joining Optum, he worked at JP Morgan as an equity research analyst.
 
2. According to United Health Group's financial operating results, Optum's revenue for the first quarter of 2014 was $11.2 billion, up from the same period last year by 28 percent, when the revenue was $8.7 billion. According to the report, Optum's earnings from operations totaled $650 million in Q1 of 2014.
 
3. Optum's clients include more than 5,000 hospitals, 80,000 physician practices, 60 million individuals and 300 health plans, among others. It serves its clients in different ways. For example, it provides risk reporting and population management tools as well as analytics platforms for healthcare organizations to support care management. The company also includes the Lewin Group, a healthcare consulting firm that delivers objective analysis and strategic counsel to state agencies.
 
4. In January 2013, Optum partnered with Rochester, Minn.-based Mayo Clinic to create Optum Labs as a center for research and innovation. In February, Optum Labs announced the addition of seven charter partners to its research collaboration, including Alexandria, Va.-based American Medical Group Association, Boston University School of Public Health and Allentown, Pa.-based Lehigh Valley Health Network. Most recently, medical device company Boston Scientific joined Optum Labs as the founding medical device partner to help research effective treatments for heart failure and related cardiac conditions.
 
5. In March, Optum also rolled out a new analytics platform to help providers engage with their patients — Optum One. The platform aims to help hospitals and physicians focus on the quality and value sides of patient care. It helps providers analyze data within electronic health record systems and take action as needed.
 
6. Optum also includes OptumRx, which focuses on managing the prescription drug benefits of commercial, Medicare, Medicaid and other governmental health plans as well as those of employers and unions. It includes a network of 67,000 community pharmacies and serves 13.5 million people through its mail service. In September 2013, OptumRx opened a new customer service center in Jacksonville, Fla., primarily serving Medicare and retiree consumers.

7. The fast-growing company announced in April that it would add approximately 75 new jobs in Southfield, Mich., in the next six to eight months. The new jobs are in software development, Internet design and program management. The company plans to add 100 to 120 new hires in the three years.

8. Optum was hired in February to serve as a consultant for the glitch-ridden Massachusetts health insurance exchange, according to a Worchester Business Journal Online report. Optum concluded that rebuilding the exchange was too costly and too risky.
 
9. WESTMED, a multispecialty group medical practice in Purchase, N.Y., joined together with UnitedHealthcare and Optum to establish an accountable care organization in 2012. Optum announced in November 2013 that the ACO is performing above the 90th percentile in National Committee for Quality Assurance Quality Compass for providing the highest level of coordinated care for breast cancer and cervical cancer screenings.
 
10. Optum focuses on three key drivers of transformative change — engaging the consumer, aligning care delivery and modernizing the health system infrastructure through health information technology.
 
It is a global company including 65,000 people, and it maintains operations across North America, South America, Europe, Asia Pacific and the Middle East. In the U.S., its locations include San Francisco, Salt Lake City and Minneapolis.

More Articles on Optum:

Optum Launches New Analytics Platform
Optum Labs Research Collaborative Adds New Partners
Healthcare Analytics: A Key to Accountable Care Organizations

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