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Humana turns over Medicaid business in Texas and Wisconsin

Two HMOs, one in Wisconsin and another in Texas, both owned by the same parent corporation, will assume Humana Inc.'s Medicaid business in those states, health plan officials announced Dec. 28.

The agreements are subject to the approval of regulators in Texas and Wisconsin.

The agreement would increase Centenes three-state membership to an anticipated 217,000 persons in February 2001.

Superior Health Plan in Texas will take over services to an anticipated 30,000 persons in Austin and San Antonio. Another Centene Corp. subsidiary, Managed Health Services (MHS) in Wisconsin, will provide Medicaid services for an anticipated additional 40,000 persons in Milwaukee, Waukesha, Kenosha, Racine, and Rock counties.

Centene is a fully integrated, multistate government services managed care company. Its market includes Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP).

Both MHS and Superior specialize in providing services to government-supported health care programs. MHS was established in 1984 solely to manage the care of Medicaid recipients under a full-risk contract with a commercial HMO. This contract has remained in place throughout Centene's history.

Superior HealthPlan is a joint venture between the Texas Association of Community Health Centers and Centene of Texas, and has been providing care to Medicaid recipients for more than 25 years.

In a statement, Humana officials say the sale is "consistent with our previously announced intentions of divesting of non-core business assets. This allows Humana to focus on developing innovative products that will better serve our members.

The changes would place an anticipated 100,000 members under MHS management. MHS has been serving the Wisconsin Medicaid population for 16 years.

Centene currently has approximately 27,000 members in El Paso, Texas, in its joint venture with Superior HealthPlan Inc., and its subsidiary MHS manages 59,000 members in 18 counties in Wisconsin. Centene also provides Medicaid services to 61,000 members in Indiana. The agreement would increase Centenes three-state membership to an anticipated 217,000 persons in February 2001.

Humana, headquartered in Louisville, Ky., is one of the nations largest publicly traded health services companies, with about 5.4 million medical members located primarily in 15 states and Puerto Rico.

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