United Healthcare probably makes more money selling data out there than most do as it started years ago with Ingenix and they have a a full set of analytics where they sell data. It started out selling prescription data and has grown big time since then. Managing care and selling data are two big profit areas for the company. United is so very large they have so many subsidiaries from a company in China that promotes Chinese drugs and devices to low income housing investments and cheap hearing aids that are sometimes used to entice seniors to sign up for their Secure Horizons plans in areas such as Florida. Here we also have the company sending reports to the government as well on how to run their Medicare business.
This is just me explaining the big profits and billions made by companies selling data . I am just stating be very aware of mergers and acquisitions as this gives more access to more data, more to sell. Just don't think of insurance companies as entities that only provide insurance anymore as they all have subsidiaries they have purchased to make money in the data selling/analytics game. They want to manage your care more than they want to sell you a policy but the sale of a policy is how they begin so it's all mingled together.
When all talk about the high cost of healthcare, data enters right in here and this is is some information from my blog where I write about this and update as I can.
In addition relative to the United Healthcare story, Forbes even caught wind of this purchase of Humedica and the money as I feel like the lost sole at times writing about this at times.
Keep an alert eye out for their marketing too as they hit hard on how the consumer is the problem with the economy and use marketing with the old bait and switch and toss stats at you constantly and sometimes it's not true as there's no company in the age we live in today that can predict as such with any high levels of accuracy but the trick here is to create a sense of urgency to sell something and we all know how repetition works on the brain.
The company looks for savings in many areas such as cutting compensation for doctors and perhaps that goes towards some of the money for some of these very large purchases and this one is said to be worth several millions. Recently United also told Medicare they know how to manage and propose aggressive senior care management as they have already sued the DOD and won the Tri-Care contract (military Medicare) in the west with using their stance of their “superior” algorithms. Below is an article where the company was confronted with paying doctors less than what they get from Medicare and complex contract with algorithms that calculate formulas is what allows this to take place. We should also be aware of the fact that Steve Larson who worked for HHS and is credited with writing most of the healthcare reform law left a few months ago and now sits as a VP at United Healthcare.
Here's one of their articles they put out stating they are focusing more on cutting doctors pay...
Humedica, the latest company bought by United uses a portal service for the hospital analytics and the information sold from EMR records can show which products are doing better, worse, etc. The intelligence will be there but not big savings like everyone thinks as you get a new left curve every day that takes what you saved yesterday and spends it today. What hospitals save here may be eaten up with Medicare re-admission fines or other such items. With complex algorithms and analytics we get smarter but the huge savings they all look for are illusionary. Pharma and device companies now have another area to spend more of their money in buying the data to see the results.
Some of their affiliations or companies they own have access to data from consumer devices that will “push’ compliance and I think education instead of the route this company goes is better. Remember they are bought and sold on Wall Street and are part of that entire game and some things are good while others get marketed and sugar coated to get consumers to buy in.
Humedica also has a banker in there too with Leerink Swann so this is posed to make money and now they have United analytics and data if they want to add more, as subdiaries of big corporations certainly share an sell tons of data. So if you have read this far, take a look at this post, the Attack of the Killer Algorithm series…where I try to give every day examples on how data and flawed data has the potential or has in fact hurt consumers. I tried to use every examples of how data works behind the scenes to create an awareness.
See who gains money from the sale of Humedica to United Healthcare...even the New England Patriots are benefiting here with this sale, again money is in the data, analytics and selling it. The Forbes article I linked to above explains this too.
The deal is valued in the hundreds of millions, according to one source, and represents a significant payday for a large consortium of local venture investors including Bain Capital Ventures, North Bridge Venture Partners and General Catalyst Partners. Boston investment bank Leerink Swann and the Kraft Group, a consortium of businesses including a private equity arm as well as the New England Patriots, also are investors in Humedica.
I wrote about the credit part of the data selling in the credit business in another diary. It' all over the place. The problem with a lot of this is with flawed data and when it is rolled many times and matched with other data bases it keep growing and due to the complexities of fixing a lot of this they don't. Outside of insurance we had Ticketmaster with their sale of tickets for the Presidential Inaugural ball. They made a mistake and put the tickets on sale early so all those regular customers who read the announcement they put out on the sale date were screwed.
People who just happened to visit the site ahead of time nabbed up the tickets as they made an error and put them up for sale early with no announcement. They said they made a mistake but did they rectify, no. This is the point and case I am trying to make here with data and IT.
Again just be aware of all the profiteering that goes on behind the scenes and profits are in the billions when the data is flawed, you and I on our own ticket have the frustration and time to fix it and that is a frustrating experience and until it is done, you are judged on flawed data, not fair and nobody is held accountable.
Again this goes along with my idea of licensing and taxing the data sellers and providing consumers a website to access so we can see what kind of data they sell and to who. If this was not so out of hand then we wouldn't need this organization around and I hope they do well.
The Institute for Research on “Humanism in Medicine” Created by The Gold Foundation–To Better Define the Role of Compassion, Altruism, and Respect To Support the Importance of the Doctor/Patient Relationship