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Rochester-based Lifetime Healthcare Companies plans to affiliate with Albany-based CDPHP

James Brown

Two not-for-profit healthcare insurance companies that cover customers in a large portion of upstate New York are combining forces.

Rochester-based Lifetime Healthcare Companies, whose current affiliations including Excellus BlueCross BlueShield and Univera Healthcare, is planning to affiliate with Albany-based CDPHP.

The president and CEO of Lifetime, Jim Reed, expects this arrangement could help both companies better control costs.

Reed said the hope is that both companies, “can work more collaboratively together, learn from each other, share a common operating platform to help potentially mitigate cost increases and improve the affordability of health care.”

But right now, they are not talking about the affiliation resulting in staff layoffs.

“We don’t have any intended staff reductions, we don’t have any intended layoffs as part of this affiliation, this combination, and we’re hopeful that we can really leverage each other’s strengths and learn from the employees on both sides,” said Reed.

Dr. John Bennett, president and CEO of CDPHP, also feels the affiliation could help both organizations be more efficient. And Bennett said this type of arrangement is becoming more common in their industry.

“It’s going to probably happen in increasing frequency particularly on the regional not-for-profit health plans,” said Bennett. “There are a number of regional plans that have either come together, or are looking at similar affiliation arrangements.”

The affiliation still needs regulatory approval. Assuming it is approved, Lifetime Healthcare would become the parent company for CDPHP.

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.