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UnitedHealth acquires Genoa Healthcare

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Genoa operates 435 pharmacies across the country.

MINNETONKA, Minn. — UnitedHealth Group has confirmed that its OptumRx division for pharmacy services is combining operations with Genoa Healthcare, which runs 435 pharmacies in behavioral health centers in 46 states. An unnamed source familiar with the deal, reported that UnitedHealth, which is based here, paid about $2.5 billion to acquire Genoa.

OptumRx spokesperson Drew Krejci said in a statement: “To help better support the pharmacy needs of patients with behavioral health and substance use disorders, OptumRx is combining with Genoa Healthcare. This will help ensure improved access, health outcomes and pharmacy, telepsychiatry, and medication management experiences for consumers across the country, including Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries, while helping public and private sector payers reduce their health care costs.”

UnitedHealth recently said that transforming pharmacy care services was a key goal of the company and it hopes to accomplish by applying its growing expertise in clinical affairs, technology and data analytics. Genoa Health operates nationwide and has strong Minnesota ties — it currently runs 19 pharmacies in community health centers in the state, and last year it acquired a spinout from the University of Minnesota that developed ways for insurers to reduce costs through better medication management for chronic illnesses.

The Renton, Wash.-based Genoa Healthcare operates the fifth-largest drug chain in America, filling 15 million prescriptions annually for more than 650,000 people at 435 full-service pharmacies. Genoa’s pharmacies are located in community mental health centers, where patients are often covered by Medicare or Medicaid.

Genoa’s methods are said to achieve medication adherence rates of more than 90%, decreasing emergency room visits by 18% and reducing hospitalizations by 40%, the company says.

Genoa Healthcare also runs the nation’s largest outpatient telepsychiatry program, with operations in more than 35 states, for 125,000 people annually. And Genoa operates a medication management solutions program for high-risk health plan members, who typically have at least four chronic conditions and $50,000 in annual medical costs.


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