Quest Diagnostics will be in network for all UnitedHealth Group members beginning Jan. 1, 2019, the organizations announced late Thursday via a new strategic partnership.
The partnership will allow the organizations to expand value-based programs, improve their digital platforms and price transparency efforts, and use real-time data sharing to reduce gaps in care, executives said.
Quest has around a 15% market share of the $50 billion diagnostic market, said Steve Rusckowski, chairman, president and CEO of Quest, adding that Quest's diagnostic services will be in network for 90% of all insured lives nationwide.
"There's a lot of the market that we can take advantage of," he said in a conference call with investors.
UnitedHealth continues to expand its offerings. The company's Optum segment plans to acquire DaVita Medical Group for $4.9 billion, which could steer more consumers into less expensive ambulatory care sites. UnitedHealth's growing share of physicians attracted Quest as the company looks to broaden its reach, executives said. UnitedHealth, which covers 48 million individuals, also has accountable care arrangements with more than 1,100 hospitals and 110,000 physicians.
Quest, which is an in-network lab for a limited number of UnitedHealth plans in some markets today, has 6,000 patient access points. It continues to expand into the retail setting through a partnership with WalMart.
"Lab data is quickly becoming the personalized roadmap that identifies the path to the next best action for individual patients," Dan Schumacher, president and chief operating officer of UnitedHealth, said in a statement.