Amedisys Sees Small Hospice Gains as Contessa Takes Off

As Amedisys Inc. (NASDAQ) awaits the outcome of its pending acquisition by Optum, the company showed only modest gains in its hospice segment.

Both admissions and average daily hospice census were down in the third quarter of the year, 6% and 2%, respectively, compared to Q3 2022. Net service revenue for the segment reached slightly more than $200 million, up from 198.7 million in the prior year’s quarter.

Care center closures during 2022 contributed to the decline in admissions and patient census.


The company saw larger gains among its high-acuity home care segment, which is run by its subsidiary, Contessa. The segment’s net service revenue rose to $4.4 million, compared with $3.5 million in Q3 2022.

Amedisys executives have continuously expressed optimism about Contessa’s growth potential as it expands its hospital-at-home and community-based palliative care programs.

“We have a tremendous opportunity for growth [with Contessa], and maybe all of that is underpinned by just an inherently fragmented market growing behind us, the tailwind of the aging population,” Amedisys CEO Richard Ashworth said in March.


Meanwhile, the company is awaiting customary approvals for the Optum buyout, though some stakeholders have called for greater scrutiny.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) and Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Washington) have called on the U.S. Justice Department (DOJ) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to carefully examine the pending acquisition due to antitrust concerns.

Optum, a subsidiary of UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UHN), in June penned its agreement to acquire Amedisys in an all-cash transaction of $101 per share, or about $3.3 billion. Optum swooped in with this offer after Amedisys began the process of a merger with Option Care in what would have been an all-stock deal amounting to $3.6 billion.

“We are excited about this opportunity with Optum – it’s a win for everyone, especially patients who need our services,” Ashworth said in a video sent to employees, according to a transcript. “Combining our home health, hospice, palliative, and high-acuity care services with Optum’s value-based care experience and resources will accelerate Amedisys and Optum’s shared mission to serve more patients and improve outcomes and patient experiences at lower costs.”

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