Anthem Launches Wellpoint Health Plan, Carelon Health Services Brands

Diving brief:

  • Anthem on Wednesday announced the launch of the Wellpoint health plan brand and the Carelon health services brand as the payer nears its rebrand to Elevance Health, which is expected to be completed later this month.
  • As part of the move, intended to streamline Anthem’s brand portfolio and reduce complexities, the Wellpoint business will consolidate Anthem’s Medicare, Medicaid and commercial plans in select markets over the next several years. The Company will not include Company-affiliated Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield and Anthem Blue Cross health plans.
  • Carelon, which will include Anthem’s current capabilities and services, is expected to serve one in three people in the United States when its transition is finalized in two years, according to the company.

Overview of the dive:

Anthem announced plans in March to rebrand itself as Elevance, a transition that is expected to be completed when the Indianapolis-based payer begins trading under the symbol ELV on June 28. The name change, intended to reflect the company’s offerings beyond just health insurance, is the company’s second in the past decade.

Prior to 2014, the company was known as WellPoint, resulting from the merger of health benefit companies Anthem and WellPoint in 2004.

Now Anthem appears to be returning to its roots, solidifying its health plan brand as Wellpoint forges ahead.

In a statement, Anthem CEO Gail Bourdeaux said unifying Anthem’s plans under one banner will help consumers and vendors better understand Anthem’s suite of products and services.

Payers are focusing more on non-traditional offerings to diversify revenue and find new growth streams. Cigna in 2020 renamed its healthcare services arm to Evernorth, and the division has consistently helped improve payer results. Likewise, UnitedHealth’s Optum is a major growth area for the Minnesota-based healthcare company.

Anthem’s new health services brand, Carelon – a combination of the word “care” and the suffix “lon”, meaning comprehensive and comprehensive – aims to suggest the importance of providing comprehensive and comprehensive care, Anthem said. .

The division’s services include research, integrated care delivery, pharmacy, behavioral health, and digital platforms and technology services. Carelon also plans to partner with other healthcare companies on digital products to improve outcomes and reduce total cost of care.

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