Jan 22, 2018 in Analysis

Aetna, Incorporation is an American company that focuses on providing health care facilities to its clientele.  The objective of the company is to empower its members to live a healthier life both at me and internationally. In order to attain these objectives, the company uses health facilities such as health insurance, a range of health care insurance products and related services. These services range from medical, pharmaceutical, dental, behavioral health, group life, long-term care, disability plans to medical management capabilities. In addition to these, Aetna offers dental pharmacy, health care, disability, group life and long-term care insurance and employee benefits.

These services are availed to their clients chiefly through Medicare, employer-paid insurance and benefit programs. The company offers an array of international health insurance plans. This is in order to meet the needs of the small, medium and large employers operating with globally-mobile populations. Aetna International provides the programs; tools and services intended to administer health benefits that are comprehensive as well as health management solutions global. Currently, Aetna has more than 400,000 members worldwide.

Aetna originated from Aetna (Fire) Insurance Company which was Hartford, Connecticut. The name was meant to summon Mount Etna which at the time was Europe's most active volcano. The current president of Aetna is Mark Bertolini. He is also the chairman and the chief executive officer of the company. Meg McCarthy is the Senior Vice President as well as the Chief Information Officer while Joseph Zubretsky is the Chief Financial Officer. The history of Aetna dates back to the 1800’s. Although it existed in the earlier years as a fire insurance company, in the 1850’s, Aetna embarked on an Annuity Fund to trade in life insurance. Three years after this move, the Annuity department alienated itself from Aetna Insurance to be integrated as the Aetna Life Insurance Company. Eliphalet Bulkeley became its new president. In the 1860’s, the company initiated a move to offer life insurance policies that paid bonuses to policyholders.  The company operations were greatly influenced by the world wars and the American Civil War.  In the 1900’s, Aetna created an Accident and Liability department.

This was meant to offer employers liability by offering their workmen collective insurance. This was in response to the growing strength of the Progressive social reform movement. In addition to this, the company launched its first national advertisement campaign and introduced an Automobile Insurance company. In 1960, Aetna went international when it bought a Canadian company known as Excelsior Life Insurance Company. This marked the beginning of Aetna becoming an international company. In the 2000’s, Aetna, under the leadership of John Rowe, sold its financial services and gave the shareholders mandate over its health services. In 2008, Aetna began a system of offering pet health insurance. Aetna has grown into one of the most prominent health insurance providers over the years. However, this has not been a smooth transit throughout.

Aetna has over the years experienced lawsuits and several complaints from its consumers.  For example, in 1999, a jury in California rewarded $116 million to a patient’s widow in punitive damages for "malice, oppression and fraud. The patient had died after Aetna belatedly approved his treatment for stomach cancer despite the fact that its own doctors had recommended. A settlement was reached in 2001. Another case occurred in 2000 when the U.S. Court of Appeals awarded $1,855,000 to Brokerage Concepts Inc. In 2001, Aetna was fined $1.15 million by the State of Texas for failing to pay doctors and hospitals on time. In the same year, Aetna was sued for failing to abide by the state's claims payment practices in the state of Maryland. These are a few of the lawsuits that Aetna has faced in the past crippling its operations. Aetna has also been facing bad publicity from some displeased customers as well as boycotts from its workforce.  This reflects negatively on the company and it discourages potential customers from working with the company.

Aetna has successfully incorporated technology into its operations in order to help people in their choosing a health plan. For example, in 2009 Aetna launched an online benefit advisor tool. This tool offers customers advise on the best health plan to choose. In 2010, Aetna was ranked 50th in the annual InformationWeek 500. This was an award for top technology innovators. Aetna Smart Source received a merit award in 2009. This was from the National Health Information Awards program and it was meant for the best website focused on health promotion in the Insurance Company category. In 2007, Aetna InteliHealth which is a consumer health information website for Aetna was rated "Excellent" by Consumer Reports Webwatch. The IT professionals in the company create the best-in-class solutions. These solutions integrate information, technology and business processes. Their experience in the systems and software allow them to keep the company connected to their customers and their marketplace.

Aetna has had a number of displeased customers. Most of them complain that Aetna denies them the medical cover they need .this has reflected negatively on the company. In addition to this, the customers claim that Aetna’s schedule of benefits is inadequate. This is because they demonstrate that Aetna practices no co-pay. Moreover, their deductibles are waived for routine physical exams.  Customers also claim that the disability benefits are the worst as the payments are usually delayed while others are denied.  Given a chance, these are the key problems one should try to solve. Ensuring that prompt payments are made for the customers would be a good way to start regaining customers trust in the company. In addition to this, the company needs to incorporate more consumer friendly measures to draw in more customers and also to help maintain the already existing ones.


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