Aetna Selling Missouri Medicaid Business to WellCare

On Tuesday, insurer Aetna (NYSE: AET  ) announced that it has agreed to sell its Missouri Medicaid business, "Missouri Care," to WellCare Health Plans (NYSE: WCG  ) for an undisclosed sum.

In a press release, Aetna noted that Missouri Care brings with it a 100,000-member client base of patients receiving managed care services in central, eastern, and western Missouri. Missouri Care's provider network includes more than 50 hospitals and 9,500 physicians.

Aetna said its decision to sell Missouri Care was necessitated by its purchase of Coventry Health Care, which brought with it a Missouri Medicaid plan of such size (more than 250,000 members) that, when combined with Missouri Care, would have exceeded the permissible number under Missouri Medicaid contracts.

Aetna is projecting that its acquisition of Coventry will close in mid-2013. The sale of Missouri Care is expected to close in the next 90 days.

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