Thursday, July 19, 2012

United Health's 2Q profit rises 5.5 percent as Health care spending slows in Minnesota

As people are getting less health care because they lost insurance and/or had their out of pocket share greatly increased we see the managed care companies  making more and more profits, mostly off the tax payer, to pay even more to the top managers and share holders.  These two articles below appearing on the same day paint the whole picture.  I don't need to tell you what's wrong with this picture.

United Health's 2Q profit rises 5.5 percent
UnitedHealth Group says its second-quarter net income rose 5.5 percent, trumping Wall Street expectations, as the health insurer reported double-digit enrollment growth in its Medicare plan offerings.
The Minnetonka, Minnesota, insurer says it earned $1.34 billion, or $1.27 per share, in the three months that ended June 30. That's up from $1.27 billion, or $1.16 per share, in the same quarter last year.
Revenue rose 8.3 percent to $27.3 billion.
Analysts forecast earnings of $1.18 per share on $27.34 billion in revenue.
The company raised its full-year earnings estimate to between $4.90 and $5.00 per share.
UnitedHealth is the largest health insurer based on revenue and the first to report earnings every quarter. Many see the company as a bellwether for managed care companies.

Health care spending slows in Minnesota
The state Health Department says the rate of health care spending in Minnesota has slowed to its lowest point since 1997, and the recession is a big reason why.
The department says health care costs are still rising, but at a much slower pace _ 2.2 percent between 2009 and 2010.
State Health Economist Stefan Gildemeister tells Minnesota Public Radio News ( the recession was a major reason why Minnesotans spent less on health care. He said many lost their insurance when they lost their jobs and others who kept their jobs were more cautious.
Gildemeister said another reason why health care spending may be slowing is that consumers are increasingly paying more of out-of-pocket costs.
Health care spending accounts for nearly 14 percent of Minnesota's economy at $37.7 billion.

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