Payer year in review: 5 top stories of 2018

Here are the five most-read stories involving health insurers published by Becker's Hospital Review in 2018:

1. With 8k more physicians than Kaiser, Optum is 'scaring the crap out of hospitals'
Since its acquisition of 250 Las Vegas-area physicians in 2008, UnitedHealth Group has steadily expanded its physician workforce to shield itself from competitors and hospitals.

2. Trump administration's new insurance guidelines for states, employers: 10 things to know
The Trump administration in October issued new guidelines and proposals aimed at giving states and employers more flexibility to waive ACA regulations.

3. UnitedHealthcare's CMO out weeks after taking role
Peter Pronovost, MD, PhD, one of the nation's leading patient safety experts, left UnitedHealthcare weeks after being named CMO in summer 2018.

4. Aetna's former medical director says he never reviewed patient records before denying care
California's insurance commissioner began investigating Aetna in February after one of the health insurer's former medical directors admitted under oath he never reviewed patients' medical records when deciding whether to approve or deny claims.

5. UnitedHealth's Optum part of $2.2B deal to acquire physician firm: 4 things to know
UnitedHealth Group's Optum is one of two companies involved in a $2.2 billion acquisition of a Tacoma, Wash.-based physician-staffing company from Fresenius.

More articles on payer issues:
Cigna-Express Scripts deal clears regulatory hurdles in California, New York
Aetna, Oscar fined in violation of insurance laws
Tenet, Cigna dispute heats up ahead of contract deadline

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