Highmark to acquire a healthcare system

As hospitals continue to merge, acquire and consolidate to manage spiraling healthcare costs, they may soon find unlikely business partners: health insurers. In the most recent move to integrate those who provide medical care and those who pay for it, Pittsburgh-based West Penn Allegheny Health System will be acquired by health insurer Highmark Inc., reports the Wall Street Journal. Under the deal, the insurer would pay doctors' salaries, offering incentives for meeting quality and efficiency goals. According to Highmark officials, the deal will also allow West Penn to stay in business. "It brings our expertise as an insurance company into the provider system," Highmark CEO Kenneth R. Melani told the WSJ. Article