UnitedHealth Group purchases LHC Group 

UnitedHealth Group has closed on its $5.4 billion acquisition of home health firm LHC Group.

"LHC Group's history of high-quality home and community-based care, matched with Optum's extensive value-based care experience and resources, will accelerate Optum's ability to deliver compassionate, high-touch, integrated care," LHC said in a Feb. 22 SEC filing.

The deal was first proposed in March and further expands UnitedHealth's ability to provide value-based care to Medicare patients.

Lafayette, La.-based LHC employs about 30,000 people, including front-line care providers and administrative and support personnel. Many of LHC's home-health and hospice operations are owned in partnership with hospital systems across 37 states and more than 960 locations.

The last day of trading for LHC Group was Feb. 22.

The purchase follows Optum's rapid growth into care delivery over the last decade, with 70,000 employed or aligned physicians across more than 2,200 locations in 2023 — the most of any organization in the country.

Optum Health, the care delivery arm, reported total revenues of $71.2 billion in 2022. Last year, the company purchased Refresh Mental Health, which includes a network of more than 300 outpatient sites. It also bought Houston-based Kelsey Seybold Clinic, a group practice with 24 locations, and its Medicare Advantage plan. In addition, Newton, Mass.-based Atrius Health and Dallas-based Healthcare Associates of Texas were acquired last year.

Optum Health's services span primary, specialty, urgent and surgical care. UnitedHeath said Jan. 13 it's planning to integrate more behavioral and home health services into Optum's care delivery strategy as it continues to expand its value-based models.

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