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Behind Aetna’s acquisition plans?

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Forbes reports that the health insurance industry’s  shift away from paying for volume to paying for value may be behind Aetna’s rumored deal to acquire either Cigna or Humana.

Humana’s booming Medicare business makes it an attractive acquisition target for Aetna, which focuses more on employer-sponsored health plans that have less unit growth potential than Medicare or Medicaid plans. And Humana has considerable experience in the fee-for-value world, Aetna less so.


“The health insurance industry deal speculation primarily focusing on Aetna’s ambitions comes just as the government plans to shift a huge amount of Medicare dollars away from the traditional fee-for-service approach to medicine that is based on volume and to medicine based on value that is tied to outcomes, performance and quality of care provided. Humana administers a large book of Medicare business Aetna may be interested in and larger amounts of capital may be needed to managed it from either insurer,” Forbes said.

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