Managed Care Report

The WellCare Management Group signed a definitive agreement to acquire all of the outstanding and issued stock of Alabama HMO DirectCare. DirectCare will trade all of its stock for 750,000 shares of WellCare stock, pending the agreement’s approval by the Alabama Department of Insurance and DirectCare shareholders, reported Managed Care Week.

• Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City had to issue revised contracts to all 3,200 physicians in its network after some physicians balked at original contract provisions. The contract amendments include a guarantee that payments will not change for one year and a clarification on physician requirements to personally perform services. The plan said 70% of physicians have returned the new contracts.

• Aetna U.S. Healthcare (Blue Bell, PA) and Virtua Health have signed a five-year contract, effective Jan. 1, that will enable the company’s members to use all of Virtua’s hospitals. Virtua is the partnership between Memorial Health Alliance and West Jersey Health System.