WellCare Health Plans said in regulatory filings that it will not be able to file past quarterly financial reports and that medical costs were up significantly while investment income fell sharply.
The Tampa, Fla.-based managed-care company said that because it remains under numerous investigations by state and federal agencies, it would not be able to file past financial reports. The Securities and Exchange Commission has given WellCare until March 17, 2009, to file its 2007 annual report. That deadline could be further extended.
The company did offer some clues to its financial picture, reporting higher-than-expected medical costs, especially in its Medicare Part D plans and in a managed-care contract covering aged, blind and disabled beneficiaries in Ohio, which WellCare ended in August. WellCare also reported $8 million in investment income for the third quarter of this year, compared to $30 million in investment income for the same time period a year ago.
Federal and state agents raided WellCares Tampa headquarters in October 2007, seizing files, and the company remains under investigation. WellCare did report that it has entered preliminary settlement discussions with the U.S. attorneys office in Florida and other federal and state officials, though there is still no official timeline for resolution. -- by Rebecca Vesely