UnitedHealthcare, Humana & more: 5 payers expanding telehealth strategies 

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Fueled by the acceleration of digital health and telehealth during the COVID-19 pandemic, several health insurers have launched initiatives to expand virtual care for members.

Here are five payers who expanded telehealth or recently had new strategies go into effect this year.

1. Humana partnered Feb. 1 with DispatchHealth, a provider of in-home medical care, to offer Humana members access to 24/7 medical care outside of the hospital. The Louisville, Ky.-based payer in March also joined a $200 million series D funding round for DispatchHealth. 

2. Indianapolis-based payer Anthem in February said it will make a direct investment in Sharecare and expand its partnership with the digital health company as it grows its product development. The size of Anthem's investment was not disclosed. Sharecare offers digital tools to help consumers manage and consolidate their health information on a single platform, and its app provides messaging and measurement tools that let users monitor their health habits and support behavior change.

3. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota extended virtual care benefits for its members through the end of 2021, the insurer said Feb. 10.

4. Evernorth, Cigna's health services business, entered into a definitive agreement to acquire telehealth company MDLive, the companies said Feb. 26.

5. UnitedHealthcare rolled out a virtual care option March 18 for members needing hearing assessments or hearing aids. 

Morgan Haefner contributed to this article.

 

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