Yesterday’s announcement that Concentra owner Select Medical is purchasing US Healthworks sent waves through the workers’ compensation world. The “new” Concentra will:
- have 565 occ health clinics and on-site centers in about 40 states,
- handle around one out of every seven occupational injuries, and
- further cement Concentra’s position as the largest initial treatment provider in work comp.
The transaction valued USHW at $753 million, or about $3 million per location. Concentra is currently jointly owned by Select Medical and investment firms Welsh Carson, Cressey & Company (and several other firms). It looks like one goal of the deal was to buy out minority investors, a not-uncommon objective for this type of transaction.
So, what does this mean for workers’ comp?
- Workers comp services is a very mature industry, where scale and buying power are critical. This is yet another indication that players in the industry recognize scale is critical.
- This looks to be continued move on the part of Concentra to focus on occupational care and de-emphasize urgent care – which is focused on non-occupational conditions.
- Concentra will have more bargaining power with work comp PPOs and payers. The giant provider can’t quite dictate terms today, but is certainly in a very strong position.
- USHW has a reputation for over-prescribing physical therapy, a concern some have with Concentra as well. Payers would be well-served to monitor this closely going forward.
What does this mean for you?
Consolidation can be beneficial for all parties.
It can also be a cause for concern for customers.