Payers

Anthem will buy palliative care provider Aspire Health

Financial terms of the deal, which expected to close in the third quarter of this year, were not disclosed.

Health insurer Anthem has signed an agreement to acquire Nashville, Tennessee-based Aspire Health, a palliative care provider.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. The acquisition is expected to close in the third quarter of this year.

By buying Aspire Health, the Indianapolis payer hopes to bolster the programs and services it can offer its consumers and provider partners.

“Aspire Health shares our perspective on the increasingly important role of integrated care and has built a unique model that provides palliative care and support services for patients and their families,” Anthem president and CEO Gail Boudreaux said in a news release.

The Nashville company makes use of algorithms to pinpoint patients with a serious illness who could benefit from additional support. It then pairs these patients with care teams that include doctors, nurses, nurse practitioners, social workers and chaplains. The team tackles numerous issues, including symptom management and coordinating the patient’s care with additional healthcare workers.

Aspire has locations in 25 states and the District of Columbia.

It was founded in 2013 by Brad Smith, who is currently CEO, and former U.S. Senator William Frist. In October 2016, the company closed a $32 million funding round led by GV (formerly Google Ventures).

“As part of Anthem, we believe we will be able to further scale our model and positively impact the lives of even more consumers and families, making home-based advanced illness care available to patients who need it,” Smith said in a news release.

Anthem’s acquisition of Aspire is part of a wider effort by health insurers to make moves with companies providing medical care. One high-profile example is the CVS Health-Aetna deal.

Photo: John Slater, Getty Images