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MetCare adds to provider base

MetCare, a subsidiary of healthcare services provider Metropolitan Health Networks is buying two primary care practices in Palm Beach, Fla. expanding the company's already-large foothold servicing Medicare members.

Boca Raton-based Metropolitan Health’s subsidiary, MetCare of Florida, is acquiring the dual-practice Kanner, Shteiman, LLC, a geriatric and internal medicine practice that  provides care to MetCare patients throughout Palm Beach, in a county with some 258,000 medicare enrollees as of 2011, according to data compiled by the Kaiser Family Foundation.

MetCare had 35 wholly-owned primary care practices and 450 independent practices under contract as of last year, according to the company’s annual report.

“We have been actively pursuing these types of practices and will continue to do so,” said Jose Guethon, MD,  Metropolitan president and CEO, in a press release. “These types of acquisitions also provide us access to the built-in growth potential of a practice whose fee-for-service patient panel, specifically those outside of the existing Humana Medicare customer base, is significant.”

The acquisition of Kanner, Shteiman is expected to be completed within three months, on undisclosed terms.

Metropolitan Health provides primary care to about 87,000 Floridians, most of them Medicare Advantage enrollees managed by Humana and also some Medicaid beneficiaries. Last year, according to the company’s annual report, 94% of revenue was earned through contracts with Humana.

MetCare bills itself as an accountable care organization. At one point, the company operated an insurance plan as well, but it was sold off to focus on primary care, said spokesman Al Palombo.

Recently, with an array of subsidiaries, Metropolitan Health has been growing somewhat prodigiously in size, if not in profits.

In early August, Metropolitan Health announced an expansion in the Midwest with Humana, with its new subsidiary, Symphony Health Partners, managing services for about 9,900 Humana Medicare Advantage members in and around Cincinnati and Indianapolis.

Last fall, Metropolitan Health bought Miami-based Continucare, where many of its primary care centers originate. The deal made Metropolitan Health the largest service network for the Medicare population in Florida.