Humana Named Top Payer For Second Consecutive Year

For the second year in a row and third time in five years, Humana Inc. (NYSE: HUM) ranks #1 in overall performance – making it the easiest payer for health care providers to do business with – in a review of 2009 claims-payment data conducted by athenahealth Inc., a provider of Internet-based business services to doctors, and Physician’s Practice magazine.

athenahealth and Physician’s Practice®, a leading practice-management journal for physicians, conduct the rankings annually to grade insurance companies on their transactions with physician offices. The complete 2010 PayerView Rankings, evaluating nearly 140 national, regional and government payers across the U.S. can be found at athenahealth.com/PayerView.

“We are honored to be named the nation’s top payer for the second consecutive year by athenahealth,” said Bruce Perkins, senior vice president of healthcare delivery systems and clinical processes at Humana. “We remain committed to investments in technology that drive efficiencies, reduce administrative costs and improve customer service. Humana and athenahealth share common goals to drive innovation that creates cost-saving business transactions for health care providers, while also reducing fraud and waste in the system.”

For example, in tandem with athenahealth, Humana offers solutions such as real-time adjudication, which enables health-plan members to have a claim processed instantly before leaving the doctor’s office – which is good for all parties involved.

“The good news from athenahealth today is that Humana is continually paying physicians more quickly and accurately than our competitors, while also improving on our own company performance year over year, which results in an increasingly improved experience for our members,” Perkins said. “We take a lot of pride in that and we devote a lot of time, resources and effort into making it happen.”

Data for the 2010 rankings was derived from athenahealth’s web-based practice-management platform, athenaCollectorSM, and ranks health insurers in areas of:

  • Financial performance
  • Administrative performance, and
  • Medical-policy simplicity

The data athenahealth analyzed came from more than 23,000 health care providers in the U.S., roughly 39 million transactions and $7 billion in charges in services billed in 45 states for the full year 2009.

Humana improved across all metrics in the ratings, including dropping its “days in accounts receivable” by nearly 16 percent to an industry-leading 22.4 days. Since the ratings began five years ago, Humana has improved its performance on this metric by more than 25 percent. It is one of the most heavily weighted measures in the athenahealth rankings.

“Clearly, with its top finish three years out of five now in the athenahealth PayerView Rankings, Humana is committed to being the easiest payer for physicians to do business with,” said Jonathan Bush, chief executive officer of athenahealth. “Humana knows that this performance translates into better relationships with the medical community and more satisfied health-plan members.”

The rankings were published today on the Physician’s Practice website, in the publication’s June issue, and on athenahealth’s website.

Humana Inc., headquartered in Louisville, Ky., is one of the nation’s largest publicly traded health and supplemental benefits companies, with approximately 10.4 million medical members and approximately 7.2 million specialty-benefit members. Humana is a full-service benefits solutions company, offering a wide array of health and supplemental benefit plans for employer groups, government programs and individuals.T

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