Aetna Sees Membership Growth From Health Law
In addition, the insurer plans to boost pay and cover more of the health care costs of about 7,000 of its workers. Meanwhile, digital health has grown from being a side show to one of the main events at the annual JP Morgan Healthcare Conference.
The Wall Street Journal:
Aetna Raises Membership Projection
Aetna Inc. expects to add more Medicare and public-exchange members in its current quarter than it had previously projected, as the insurer continues to benefit from the new health-care law. Ahead of a presentation at the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference on Tuesday, Aetna backed its per-share earnings outlook for the current year of at least $6.90 a share and its revenue guidance of at least $62 billion. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters are expecting $7.15 a share in earnings on $62.5 billion in revenue. (Dulaney, 1/13)
Los Angeles Times:
Health Insurance Giant Aetna To Boost Minimum Wage To $16
Beginning in 2016, the Hartford, Conn., insurer also plans to cover more of the healthcare costs of about 7,000 of its workers. Some employees could see savings of up to $4,000, the company said in a statement. "We are committed to fostering a strong and successful workplace and a resilient workforce, as well as increasing our ability to attract and retain the best talent," the company said in a statement. (Panzar, 1/13)
The Wall Street Journal:
Digital Health Flexes Muscle At Vaunted Biotech Conference
The Colonial Room of the St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco was filled beyond capacity Monday afternoon, and the offices of digital-health seed fund Rock Health were buzzing with hundreds of partygoers just a couple of hours later. Both events were connected to the JP Morgan Healthcare Conference, but neither was geared toward pharmaceutical or medical-device executives looking to make deals, as has traditionally been the focus at the vaunted, 33-year-old conference. Instead, digital health software–and analytics that bring more transparency and more insight to the delivery of health care has grown from being a sideshow at the conference to being one of the main events. (Hay, 1/13)
Meanwhile, Actavis works to switch users to its newer Alzheimer's medication before cheaper generics arrive -
The Wall Street Journal's Pharmalot:
Can Actavis Switch Enough Namenda Patients Before Generics Arrive?
While Actavis is busy fighting a court battle over marketing plans for a newer version of its big-selling Alzheimer’s pill, the drug maker is also working hard to convert many patients from its older version of the drug before generic rivals emerge later this year. At the moment, the newer Namenda XR accounts for about 40% of all prescriptions written for both the old and new versions of the drug. But Actavis believes Namenda XR can capture as many as 70% of prescriptions by July, when generic copycat versions of the older Namenda IR become available. (Silverman, 1/13)