News Briefs

✦ Bright Health plans to acquire California-based family-owned health plan Universal Care. Doing business as Brand New Day, the 37-year-old company serves Medicare-eligible seniors and special needs populations in 12 California counties with a focus on care management and patient-primary care relationships, according to a release from the companies. Venture-backed Bright Health started on the exchanges in 2016 and began selling MA plans in 2018; the company has since expanded its offerings by 300% and now sells plans in the individual and Medicare Advantage markets in 12 states. The Brand New Day transaction, which is expected to close this year and still requires regulatory approval, will give Bright Health a “strong presence in California with an established and philosophically aligned partner,” said President and Vice Chairman Mike Mikan. Read more at

✦ Select Medicare Advantage plans of Virginia Beach, Va.-based Optima Health will offer rewards and incentives as part of the MA Value-Based Insurance Design (VBID) model. For 2020, Optima’s Medicare Value and Medicare Prime HMO plans in Hampton Roads will reward qualifying members (e.g., those with diabetes, behavioral health conditions) for participating in certain wellness and health care planning activities. Visit

© 2021 MMIT

Lauren Flynn Kelly Managing Editor, Radar on Medicare Advantage

Lauren has been covering health business issues, including drug benefits and specialty pharmacy, for more than a decade. She served as editor of Drug Benefit News (the predecessor to Radar on Drug Benefits) from 2004 to 2005 and again from 2011 to 2016, and now manages Radar on Medicare Advantage. Lauren graduated from Vassar College with a B.A. in English.

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