A new contender enters the Medicare Advantage arena.
The open enrollment period for Medicare Advantage plans begins Oct. 15. With 3,100 plans expected to be available, up from 2,700 in 2017, Medicare Advantage — offered by private companies approved by Medicare — is becoming more popular among many seniors.
One of the new-to-market Medicare Advantage providers is Devoted Health, a startup headquartered in Fort Lauderdale that’s making a big push to sign up plan participants in the Tampa Bay area. President Dariel Quintana spent 19 years with Humana, one of a handful of companies that dominate the Medicare Advantage market. He started out as a sales rep and worked his way up to vice president of primary care and care delivery.
“This is not about the latest and greatest idea, creating things you are going to download,” Quintana says. “This is an execution play.”
Quintana says Devoted Health will compete for customers by offering more personally tailored plans featuring care providers and hospitals that have excellent reputations for working with Medicare recipients. The end goal is member satisfaction, not sky-high revenue growth.
“We are building the Medicare Advantage program that we want for our families,” he says, “and we are here for the long haul. We’ve seen a fair number of companies in this space start up with the goal of selling to a larger competitor, but we want to retire from this company.”
Devoted Health’s business plan has impressed deep-pocketed investors, including Venrock, a venture-capital firm known for its support of Intel, Apple and CloudFlare. Partially from a recent investment from Venrock — Quintana declines to disclose the investment figure — Devoted Health has already hired 150 people.
“It was very important that we have investors for the long term,” Quintana says. “We want to reshape the way care is delivered, so we’re not looking for short-term investors. Like us, Venrock is taking a long view. There is a collective sense of mission.”