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Judge Approves Sale of Some DC Chartered Assets to AmeriHealth, a Big Step Toward Avoiding Disruption of Health Coverage for City’s Most Vulnerable

Friday, March 1, 2013

A judge Friday approved the sale of some assets of DC Chartered Health Plan Inc., the city’s largest Medicaid insurer, to AmeriHealth Mercy Family of Companies.

“This is another step toward ensuring more than 100,000 of the District’s most vulnerable residents continue to get their health care without serious disruption,” said Commissioner William P. White of the Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking.

The department put Chartered into receivership in October, concerned about the company’s financial condition; it had lost more than $9 million in 2011.

DC Superior Court Judge Melvin R. Wright Friday rejected a request by Chartered’s parent company to delay the sale so its lawyers could have more time to present arguments against the plan.

The order the judge issued Friday afternoon found “no just reason for delay.”

The sale, Judge Wright’s order said, “would prevent serious disruption for Chartered’s enrollees, address the interests of Chartered’s employees and would provide funds that will help Chartered satisfy its liabilities.” The sale is “necessary and appropriate” and “fair and equitable to all parties concerned.”

The ruling is crucial because the official in charge of the receivership is operating under a tight deadline to get the transaction done. AmeriHealth, headquartered in Philadelphia, has applied for a contract to continue serving Chartered’s clients which would begin May 1.

“Our goal all along has been to find a solution for the District,” said Deputy Rehabilitator Daniel L. Watkins. “We are a lot closer today thanks to this ruling.”

AmeriHealth agreed to pay $5 million for Chartered and add more than $30 million more in capital in a new company.

AmeriHealth was the best qualified suitor, according to Mr. Watkins’ financial advisors, with the capital and experience to handle a large group of enrollees. The company is a national leader in Medicaid managed care and other health-care solutions for the under-served with nearly 5 million members in 14 states.

Chartered will remain in receivership through at least the rest of the year under the reorganization plan filed with the court.

Visit disb.dc.gov/chartered for additional information.