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Humana (HUM), Mercy Tie Up to Extend Telehealth Services

By Zacks Investment ResearchStock MarketsFeb 25, 2021 11:29PM ET
Humana (HUM), Mercy Tie Up to Extend Telehealth Services
By Zacks Investment Research   |  Feb 25, 2021 11:29PM ET
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Humana Inc (NYSE:HUM). HUM recently inked a deal with Missouri-based Mercy to enhance virtual healthcare for patients. This is an extension to offer holistic medical care to its Humana Medicare Advantage members. The agreement, now effective, expands on the company’s current network contract, which allows in-network access to Mercy hospitals, outpatient facilities and physician practices.

This joint effort will be accessible to Humana Medicare Advantage members who are patients of Mercy’s more than 4,000 integrated primary and specialty care clinicians in the US states of Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma.

The tie-up has certain features, such as Mercy Virtual where Humana Medicare Advantage members now enjoy in-network access to comprehensive virtual resource. Plus, they can connect with above 300 clinicians 24X7. Per this contract, individuals are provided with care based on their needs, which is expected to improve health outcomes. This value-based care is undoubtedly different from the traditional "fee-for-service" models.

Notably, Mercy will be able to gain from this solid payor relationship, which will help curbing the total cost of care as well.

The deal combines the companies, which have been trying to provide personalised and enriched care to patients.

The move is aptly timed as more and more people are shifting toward telehealth check-ups or virtual care visits. It will help people fight their chronic or routine conditions from the comforts of their house. Even though vaccine shots will be provided at large sometime soon, telehealth care is here to stay. The company constantly made efforts to help members amid these challenging times. It witnessed higher telehealth visits in 2020 than its earlier years.

Humana has a bolstering value-based care presence. It exited 2020 with more than 2.7 million individual Medicare Advantage and commercial members in more than 1,000 value-based relationships across 43 states and Puerto Rico.

One of its peers UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (NYSE:UNH) UNH recently enhanced its virtual care solutions with local physicians for members under employer-sponsored plans. This health insurance giant also launched a Virtual Primary Care service that provides access to medical services in a better fashion, now available across Arizona, Colorado, Illinois, Maryland, North Carolina, Ohio, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, Washington, D.C. and West Virginia.

Zacks Rank and Price Performance

Shares of this currently Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) health care provider have gained 21.1% in a year, outperforming the industry’s growth of 19.9%. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Other health care providers, such as Centene (NYSE:CNC) Corporation CNC and Cigna Corporation (NYSE:CI) CI have also rallied 11.7% and 15.1% each in the past year.

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Humana (HUM), Mercy Tie Up to Extend Telehealth Services

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Humana (HUM), Mercy Tie Up to Extend Telehealth Services

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