Another health system outsources its administrative services to Optum

MarinHealth Medical Center is the latest health system to enlist Optum for operational support, with the not-for-profit California provider inking a 10-year contract with the healthcare services giant on Thursday.

MarinHealth will lean on Optum to streamline its administrative processes, offer insight into its supply chain and for revenue cycle management services. Optum’s technology will also provide a simplified consumer experience for patients, MarinHealth said.

As part of the agreement, approximately 100 MarinHealth workers will transition to Optum employees, although they will continue to directly support MarinHealth’s operations, Optum said. Employees serving in patient registration and accounts, coding and reimbursement and supply chain will transfer to the Optum side. Optum declined to comment on the financial terms of the deal.

But MarinHealth said its goal was to remain an independent health system, and said outsourcing its administrative functions would allow its staff to more time to focus on patient care.

“Like our partners at MarinHealth, we believe people are best served by health systems and caregivers who are embedded in their local communities,” Optum Insight CEO Rick Hardy said in a news release. “This relationship is another example of Optum’s ongoing support of local care systems across the country and we are privileged to help MarinHealth continue to provide high-quality care to patients, as they have done for years.”

The health services business has inked similar deals with SSM Health in St. Louis, California-based John Muir Health and Colorado-based Boulder Community Health.

Last year, Bassett Healthcare Network in New York notably agreed to outsource its administrative and IT functions to Optum, in a move to avoid being acquired. As part of that deal, 500 employees transferred their employment to Optum, which represents the fastest-growing arm of UnitedHealth Group.

In 2021, Optum grew revenue 14% year-over-year to $155.6 billion. Its full-year profits increased 19.4% to $12 billion.