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Press Release: AIS Health’s Annual Executive Pay Survey

By Kelly Mullin

Exclusive AIS Health Data Shows How Much Health Insurer CEOs Were Paid in 2020

Although some health insurers reported record-high profits as the COVID-19 pandemic drove down routine care utilization, that trend did not translate to big compensation bumps for some of the highest-paid insurer CEOs.

Washington, DC, Oct 08, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Only two CEOs at the six largest publicly traded health insurers saw their total compensation increase in 2020 compared with 2019 — Cigna Corp.’s David Cordani, and Anthem, Inc.’s Gail Boudreaux — while the other four saw decreases. Some Blue Cross Blue Shield insurers, however, gave their chief executives sizeable pay hikes, including a 109% raise for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota’s Craig Samitt, and a 73% bump for Independence Blue Cross’ now-retired Daniel Hilferty.

That’s according to Health Plan Weekly, published by AIS Health, the journalism division of Managed Markets Insight & Technology, LLC. (MMIT). The report is based on AIS Health’s annual collection of compensation data for the country’s largest health insurance companies by commercial risk enrollment.

For perennial top earner Michael Neidorff of Centene, a bump in base salary does not necessarily mean a rise in overall annual compensation. Neidorff saw his salary rise from $1.5 million in 2019 to $1.8 million in 2020, but his overall compensation dropped 5.6% year over year, from $26.4 million to $24.9 million.

While the compensation increases at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota and Independence stand out from the pack, other CEOs at non-publicly traded insurers received less eye-popping but still-significant raises. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona’s Pamela Kehaly, for example, saw her total compensation rise 24.5%, from $2.7 million in 2019 to $3.3 million in 2020. And EmblemHealth Plan, Inc. CEO Karen Ignagni — who once was the CEO of insurer trade group America’s Health Insurance Plans — got a 66.6% compensation boost year over year.

Health Plan Weekly provides in-depth analysis of the trends affecting health insurers’ market share, profitability and regulation, and the strategies they use to respond. This weekly publication covers strategic business, financial and regulatory analysis relevant to health insurers, pharmaceutical companies, health systems, benefits managers and analysts.

Jill Brown Kettler
AIS Health, an MMIT company

Kelly Mullin

Kelly Mullin Digital Marketing Specialist

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