Kaiser, Oxford See Quarterly Gains; 1st Since 1997

The next time Kaiser Permanente comes to CalPERS with its hat in its hand, it may have to be very persuasive. Kaiser's HMO turned a $56 million first-quarter profit — its first quarter in the black in two years. Kaiser's turnaround — it lost $881 million in 1997 and '98 — is due to premium hikes and fewer referrals to non-Kaiser hospitals.

Also on the comeback trail: Oxford Health Plans, which eked out a $3.2 million after-tax, first-quarter profit — its first since 1997. Oxford CEO Norman Payson, M.D., said Oxford would drop a point-of-service plan in New York and drop some Medicare markets next year to boost its yield.

On the for-profit side, Aetna U.S. Healthcare's after-tax quarterly profit was $116 million, up $24 million, while PacifiCare made $74 million, a $33 million gain. United HealthCare cleared $132 million — news no doubt felt in Louisville, where Humana blamed part of its $16 million loss on its failed merger with United.

Last year was ugly for some not-for-profits, including Harris Methodist Health Plan, which lost $99 million. And after announcing that it bled $54 million, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care showed CEO Allan Greenberg and his CFO the door.

Subscribe to Our Newsletters

Monthly table of contents

Be notified as each issue of Managed Care is available online.

Biweekly newsletter

Recent topics have included:

PTCommunity news

New drug approvals, clinical trials, drug management. Three times per week.