Humana saved $4B through its value-based care programs last year

Humana saved an estimated $4 billion through its value-based care programs last year, according to a new report.

The insurer released its annual look at its value-based care initiatives Wednesday, which found Humana's Medicare Advantage (MA) members would have incurred those additional costs had they been enrolled in traditional, fee-for-service Medicare plans.

Humana said that 67% of its MA members, or 2.41 million beneficiaries, are treated by primary care physicians who are enrolled in value-based arrangements.

Members received preventive screenings in greater numbers and were able to avoid unneeded visits to the hospital, according to the report. Members treated by physicians in value-based arrangements with Humana were provided screenings between 8% and 19% more often for conditions like colorectal cancer, osteoporosis, diabetic eye disease and managing blood glucose levels.

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Bruce Broussard, CEO of Humana, said in a statement that value-based care reinforces Humana's mission to provide whole-person health.

“The premise of human care—where we listen to and address the specific physical health, behavioral health and health-related social needs of our members and their care teams—is amplified in value-based care agreements,” Broussard said. “Our collaboration with primary care physicians and their care teams is helping to deliver simpler and more convenient care and reducing avoidable hospitalizations.”

Humana members treated by physicians in value-based models saw 211,000 fewer inpatient days at the hospital and also spent less time in the emergency department, according to the report.

Members treated in these arrangements visited the emergency room 10.3% less often, for about 90,500 fewer visits, and had a 29.2% lower admission rate, for about 165,000 fewer admissions compared to traditional Medicare beneficiaries.

Physicians in value-based care arrangements also received higher marks from members, earning scores of 3.3 stars out of 5 compared to 2.9 stars out of 5.