Make us your home page
Instagram

Tampa's WellCare Health Plans to cut 360 jobs

WellCare Health Plans Inc. will cut 360 jobs, about 9 percent of its work force, as the Tampa managed-care company tries to reduce certain lines of business.

WellCare previously announced plans to withdraw next year from offering Medicare Advantage private, fee-for-service plans for seniors. Job cuts also will result from combining four regional operations into three and other streamlining efforts, WellCare said Wednesday.

Not all the job losses will be in the Tampa Bay area, said spokeswoman Amy Knapp, who couldn't provide a breakdown by state Wednesday night.

"Our objective remains building a stronger company that can efficiently and effectively provide important health care options to the millions of beneficiaries we serve and the government clients that have entrusted us to do so," chief executive Heath Schiesser said in a statement.

WellCare is trying untangle itself from what the chief federal prosecutor for Central Florida called "one of the largest health care fraud cases in the United States."

This month, WellCare agreed to pay $80 million to avoid conviction on a charge of conspiracy to defraud the Florida Medicaid program and the Florida Healthy Kids Corp., prosecutors said.

On Monday, WellCare said it would pay a $10 million civil penalty to settle an informal inquiry by the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company's public filings reflected more than $40 million as profits that WellCare fraudulently failed to return to the Florida agencies from 2003 though 2007, the SEC said.

WellCare is in continuing talks to resolve investigations by the U.S. Department of Justice's civil division and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Separately, the company remains under a federal prohibition from selling Medicare plans. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services sanctioned WellCare in February for sales practices and how the company handled customer complaints.

The enrollment ban will stay in effect until the agency agrees WellCare has fixed the problems. WellCare is aiming to persuade federal officials to lift the prohibition before Medicare enrollment for 2010 begins in the fall.

Steve Huettel can be reached at huettel@sptimes.com or (813) 226-3384.

Tampa's WellCare Health Plans to cut 360 jobs 05/20/09 [Last modified: Friday, May 22, 2009 12:55pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Heights Public Market to host two Tampa Bay food trucks

    Business

    TAMPA — The Heights Public Market announced the first two food trucks for its "rotating stall," which will feature new restaurants every four months. Surf and Turf and Empamamas will be rolled out first.

    Heights Public Market is opening this summer inside the Tampa Armature Works building.
[SKIP O'ROURKE   |   Times file photo]

  2. Author Randy Wayne White could open St. Pete's biggest restaurant on the pier

    Food & Dining

    ST. PETERSBURG — The story begins with Yucatan shrimp.

    St. Petersburg Deputy Mayor Kanika Tomalin, pilot Mark Futch, Boca Grande, St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman, and author and businessman Randy Wayne White,  Sanibel, exit a Maule Super Rocket seaplane after taking a fight around Tampa Bay off the St. Petersburg waterfront, 6/28/17.  White and his business partners are in negotiations with the City of St. Petersburg to build a fourth Doc Ford's Rum Bar & Grille on the approach to the St. Petersburg Pier with a second event space on the pier according to White. The group met near Spa Beach after a ground breaking ceremony for the new pier. "We want to have our business open by the time the pier opens," said White. Other Dr. Ford restaurants are located on Sanibel, Captiva and Ft. Myers Beach. SCOTT KEELER   |   Times
  3. Guilty plea for WellCare Health Plans former counsel Thaddeus Bereday

    Business

    Former WellCare Health Plans general counsel Thaddeus M.S. Bereday pleaded guilty to one count of making a false statement to the Florida Medicaid program, and faces a maximum penalty of five years in federal prison. A sentencing date has not yet been set, acting U.S. Attorney W. Stephen Muldrow of the Middle District …

    WellCare Health Plans former general counsel Thaddeus M.S. Bereday, pleaded guilty to one count of making a false statement to the Florida Medicaid program, and faces a maximum penalty of five years in federal prison. A sentencing date has not yet been set, acting U.S. Attorney W. Stephen Muldrow of the Middle District of Florida stated Wednesday. [LinkedIn handout]
  4. DOT shows alternatives to former Tampa Bay Express toll lanes

    Transportation

    TAMPA — State transportation officials are evaluating at least a half-dozen alternatives to the controversial Tampa Bay interstate plan that they will workshop with the community for the next 18 months.

    Florida Department of Transportation consultant Brad Flom explains potential alternatives to adding toll lanes to Interstate 275 during a meeting Wednesday at DOT's Tampa office. Flom presented seven diagrams, all of which swapped toll lanes for transit, such as light rail or express bus, in the I-275 corridor from downtown Tampa to Bearss Ave. [CAITLIN JOHNSTON | Times]
  5. Claim: State pressured CFO, used secret recordings to shut down Universal Health Care

    Banking

    ST. PETERSBURG — The founder of St. Petersburg's Universal Health Care alleges that Florida regulators conspired with the company's chief financial officer to drive the once high-flying Medicare insurer out of business.

    Federal agents raided the headquarters of Universal Health Care in 2013, ordering employees to leave the building. The insolvent St. Petersburg Medicare insurer was then in the process of being liquidated by state regulators.
[DIRK SHADD   |   Times file photo]