Aetna U.S. Healthcare has won state approval from regulators to market its HMO in Missouri and Kansas. The entry of Aetna into the Kansas City area means 13 HMOs will be competing in the market.
Aetna's network includes 2,400 physicians and 17 hospitals, but it does not include any hospitals in the St. Luke's-Shawnee Mission Health System or Health Midwest.
St. Luke's-Shawnee Mission operates MidAmerica HealthNet HMO, and Health Midwest operates Blue Advantage HMO. Those plans have been having financial troubles (March 23, p. 16).
Aetna U.S. Healthcare already has 90,000 enrollees in point-of-service, PPO and indemnity plans.