US-based health insurer UnitedHealth announced in early January 2021 that it is to purchase US health tech firm Change Healthcare in a US$13-billion deal (which includes about $5 billion in debt owed by Change Healthcare).
The deal will see the health tech firm folded into Optum, UnitedHealth’s health and information technology business, which, it has been reported, is due to account for around 50 per cent of UnitedHealth’s overall earnings in 2021.
The new acquisition will see the health insurance firm’s health services expand, including products for revenue management, customer experience platforms and medical imaging data – all of which will benefit United Healthcare and the many healthcare providers that it works with.
Helping providers and payers serve their patients
“Together we will help streamline and inform the vital clinical, administrative and payment processes on which healthcare providers and payers depend to serve patients,” Andrew Witty, President of UnitedHealth Group and Chief Executive of Optum, said.
Strategic partnerships and buyouts have been a key driver of revenue over the last 12 months, helping payers and providers maintain operations, and ensuring international patients have access to appropriate care. BDMS partnered with Plug and Play Tech Center back in December, and Allianz Partners and Doctor Care Anywhere (DOC) signed an agreement that allowed Allianz IPMI policyholders based in Europe to access DOC's digital health services.
The deal between UnitedHealth and Change Healthcare is expected to close in the second half of 2021.