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Tenet CEO on profiting from Obamacare

Tenet CEO: Prepared for surge of patients

The Affordable Care Act could result in higher earnings for the health-care industry, Tenet Healthcare President and CEO Trevor Fetter said Monday.

"We're going to pick up volumes that we didn't have before," he said. "Presumably, more of those patients will have insurance."

Fetter told CNBC's "Halftime Report" that Tenet was working on strategies to make care more affordable by cutting costs in urgent-care centers and freestanding emergency departments.

"It's a very hard thing to educate the patients that they ought to go to a physician or try to make an appointment if they're experiencing emergency conditions," Fetter said. "They're going to go to an urgent care, an emergency department or a hospital. Our job is to be ready for them and to provide the service at a more affordable cost. I think that's part of the challenge for the future."

(Read more: Obama defends Obamacare: 'We will make this work')

Tenet is also favorable toward performance-based health care, in which insurers pay based primarily on the quality of care, he added.

"At this point, we've got value-based care going on throughout our company and many different models," Fetter said.

In response to whether Tenet would make net hires this year, Fetter said only that he expects 2014 to be "a turning point for the industry."

Earnings this week: Intel, UnitedHealth & more

Michael Murphy, managing director at Rosecliff Capital, said UnitedHealth his top industry pick. It is scheduled to report quarterly earnings Thursday.

"It's right up near its recent highs, but I think through $75 the stock's got a big 2014," he said.

(Read more: Obamacare enrollment healthier, with room to grow: Survey)

Stephanie Link, chief investment officer at The Street, had a couple of picks.

"I like the restructuring at WellPoint and the discounted valuation, but I also like HCA," she said. "I like that they're focusing on specialty, and that's actually helping their margin structure."

Joe Terranova of Virtus Investment Partners said he has been looking to sell his biotech holdings but has not done so yet.

By CNBC's Bruno J. Navarro. Follow him on Twitter @Bruno_J_Navarro.


This story has been updated to correct comments on emergency room visits.