Optum CEO taking temporary leave, Q1 revenues hit $32.8B — 7 things to know

Optum announced April 15 that CEO Andrew Witty is taking a temporary leave of absence and reported $32.8 billion in revenues for the first quarter of 2020.

Seven things to know:

1. Mr. Witty, who also serves as Minnetonka, Minn.-based UnitedHealth Group's president, is leaving to help lead the World Health Organization's new vaccine development and distribution initiative. He will return to his roles upon completion of the assignment.

2. As UnitedHealth Group's health services arm, Eden Prairie, Minn.-based Optum posted a 24.6 percent year-over-year increase in revenues for the first quarter of 2020, with double-digit revenue growth across OptumHealth, OptumInsight and OptumRx.

3. Optum's first-quarter earnings from operations hit $2.1 billion, up from $1.9 billion in the first quarter of 2019. However, operating margins were at 6.4 percent, down from 7.1 percent in the same quarter last year.

4. OptumHealth revenues reached $9.2 billion, representing a 36.9 percent year-over-year increase. The business served about 96 million people in the first quarter of 2020, compared to roughly 93 million people in the first quarter of 2019.

5. OptumHealth's revenue per consumer was up 33 percent year over year, driven by growth in value-based care arrangements.

6. Highlighting actions taken to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, UnitedHealth Group said it shifted more than 4,000 OptumCare physicians to telehealth for visits that would have otherwise been canceled over safety concerns.

7. UnitedHealth Group is providing full wages for its entire workforce, as well as pay hikes for front-line clinical workers in communities hit hard by COVID-19. The company said it does not intend to request or retain any government assistance.

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