The insurer's $4.9 billion acquisition of Amerigroup, announced in July, will add 19 states and 4.5 million members to WellPoint's Medicaid footprint. It will also enhance WellPoint's ability to serve the dual eligibles market and capitalize on the emerging long-term services market. The Department of Justice has extended its anti-trust review of the deal, but is not expected to delay the closing. Although this is generally viewed as a good, strategic buy, there is some thought that WellPoint overpaid for this asset and that created problems for Braly.
The June acquisition of 1-800 CONTACTS provides WellPoint with direct-to-consumer expertise as well as the opportunity to expand into a growing business segment. The contact lenses provider has more than three million active customers. Analysts have a mixed opinion of this acquisition with some saying the reported $800 million price tag was too high.
Braly certainly had her share of missteps. In 2010 an ill-timed effort by Anthem, a WellPoint subsidiary, to hike premiums by as much as 39% is credited with uniting congressional Democrats to support Pres. Obama's healthcare reform efforts.
Meanwhile, WellPoint has only a 27% favorability rating among hospital and health system contracting executives, according to a recent survey from Revive Health.