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Hospital operator Ascension buying insurer U.S. Health for $50 million

Deal gives provider ability to participate in the state’s health insurance exchange with its narrow network.

Susan Morse, Managing Editor

Ascension Health's Catholic Health System in Buffalo, NY. Photo from Google.

St. Louis-based healthcare provider Ascension Health will acquire U.S. Health and Life Insurance Co. for $50 million, according to documents filed with the Michigan Department of Financial and Insurance Services, a move that boosts its services in population health.

Ascension Health and Trinity Health own Together Health Network LLC, a physician-led clinically integrated network. The acquisition of U.S. Health will provide Together Health with the ability to participate in the state’s health insurance exchange with its narrow provider network, according to Crain’s Detroit Business.

[Also: Tracking 2015 mergers and acquisitions]

The newly formed subsidiary, Ascension Care Management, will own and operate businesses that are part of the population health management platform of Ascension.

USHL is licensed in about 20 states and has as its target market small employers of less than 100 employees.

USHL has received approval from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to sell various policies for small employers under the Affordable Care Act.

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After the acquisition, USHL will become a subsidiary of Michigan-based U.S. Health Holdings.

Ascension Health is the parent company of St. John Providence Health System, a five-hospital system, and nine other hospitals in Michigan. Ascension Health and Trinity Health own 27 hospitals with more than 5,000 physicians on medical staffs in Michigan.

Twitter: @SusanMorseHFN