The news: UnitedHealth Group (UHG) reported $80 billion in revenues and $5 billion in profit in Q1. That’s up from $70.2 billion in revenues and about on par with $4.9 billion in profits in the last quarter of 2021.
- UHG’s analytics arm Optum was a major revenue driver in Q1. OptumHealth’s revenues grew 34% from Q4 to Q1.
UHG becomes a clinical care behemoth: Its mammoth mergers and acquisitions show how it's growing faster than any other insurer.
Last month, Optum scooped up one of the largest US in-home healthcare organizations, LHC Group, for $5.4 billion. Once the deal closes in late 2022, Optum will gain access to LHC Group’s 30,000 healthcare workers and 12 million patient interactions annually.
Competitors like Humana have also inked multi-billion dollar expansion deals. But UHG is still on track to dominate every corner of the healthcare industry.
- In January 2021, Optum announced plans to snap up fellow health IT company Change Healthcare for $13 billion.
- At the time, we said the companies’ combined reach would make Optum an undisputed data analytics powerhouse in healthcare. Change Healthcare processes over $1.5 trillion in healthcare claims annually, per its website.
- Regulators are pushing back with anti-competitive concerns. Still, UHG expects the acquisition to close sometime this year.
What’s next? Once the Optum-Change Healthcare deal goes through, UHG will become an even bigger competitive threat to health systems than giants like Amazon and CVS.
Optum employs 53,000 providers and 1,450 neighborhood clinics across the US, according to its site.
- Its reach doesn’t stop at its in-person clinics, though. Last April, UHG’s Optum announced the launch of a nationwide telehealth service, Optum Virtual Care.
The Change Healthcare merger will extend UHG’s analytics presence.
- In fact, 48% of health executives already say UHG-Optum is an “extreme threat” to their health system.
- That’s far higher than their perceived threat from Amazon (18%), CVS (17%), and Walmart (15%), per a 2021 Kaufman Hall report.