AMFC to Offer Medicare Advantage Special Needs Plans in Pennsylvania and South Carolina

—Veteran health care executive John Baackes to lead AMFC's newest line of business

Enrollment to begin on October 15

PHILADELPHIA, Oct. 11, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- AmeriHealth Mercy Family of Companies (AMFC) announced today that it has been approved by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to offer Medicare Advantage Special Needs Plans (SNP) to dual-eligible beneficiaries in select counties in Pennsylvania and South Carolina. AMFC will begin accepting enrollment applications on Monday, October 15, with services to begin on January 1, 2013.

AMFC's newest line of business will be led by veteran health care executive John Baackes, president, Medicare VIP Plans. Baackes reports to AMFC President and Chief Executive Officer Michael A. Rashid.

AMFC will offer AmeriHealth VIP Care in Lancaster, Lehigh and Northampton Counties, and a separate D-SNP product in Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia Counties.

In addition, AMFC will offer First Choice VIP Care in South Carolina. This D-SNP product will be open to eligible beneficiaries in Abbeville, Anderson, Berkeley, Charleston, Greenville, Laurens, Lexington, Orangeburg, Pickens, Richland, Saluda and Spartanburg Counties.

D-SNPs are Medicare Advantage plans for dual-eligibles, or individuals whose combination of income, health and age makes them eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid. There are approximately nine million dual-eligibles in the United States. About $350 billion is spent each year on health care for this population.

"Dual-eligibles are an underserved population with significant health disparities," said Rashid. "Our 30 years of experience in Medicaid managed care makes us uniquely qualified to help Pennsylvania's and South Carolina's dual-eligibles manage their health and live more comfortable lives."

About John Baackes

Baackes was most recently CEO of Senior Whole Health, a voluntary health care plan for more than 9,000 low-income seniors in Massachusetts, New York and Connecticut. Senior Whole Health specialized in the dual-eligible market, offering both SNP and Part D plans. He has also served as a senior vice president for Group Health Incorporated and as president of Kaiser Permanente's Northeast division.

"John's unique combination of skills in leading organizations that ensure access to quality health care for the most challenging populations is perfectly aligned with our mission and vision," said Rashid. "We are pleased to have someone of his caliber leading this expansion of the enterprise."

About AmeriHealth Mercy Family of Companies

AmeriHealth Mercy Family of Companies (AMFC) is one of the nation's leaders in health care solutions for the underserved. AMFC operates in 12 states and serves more than 4.5 million Medicaid, Medicare and CHIP members through its Medicaid managed care products, pharmaceutical benefit management services, behavioral health services and other administrative services. Headquartered in Philadelphia, AMFC is a mission-driven company with 30 years of experience serving low-income and chronically ill populations.

For more information, please contact:

Michelle Davidson

Director, Media Relations

Phone: (215) 863-6364

Mobile: (215) 208-9816


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Source: AmeriHealth Mercy Family of Companies