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UnitedHealth Reports Positive Q4 Earnings

UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH) an American health care company, surpassed fourth quarter estimates on Wednesday. The novelty comes amid lower medical costs as a result of less elective surgeries due to Covid-19.

“I couldn’t be prouder of the more than 325,000 women and men of this enterprise for their role in advancing a higher performing health system during these times of unprecedented challenges,” said CEO David Wichmann. “We are grateful for the human spirit and resolve of our people, including our 125,000 clinicians who, with other frontline health care workers, demonstrated extraordinary collaboration, compassion and innovation.”

Many health insurers profited in 2020 as people avoided hospitals for both routine and elective medical procedures. UnitedHealth stated a medical loss ratio, the percentage of premiums paid out for medical services, of about 79.1% within the fourth quarter. A big jump compared to last year’s 82.5%, outdone by Cocid-19 testing, treatment and vaccine expenses.

However, the company reported a decrease in profit as demand for health-care services  starts to increase. Furthermore, UnitedHealth experienced a rise in costs regarding programs built to make Covid-19 testing and treatment available to its clients.

UnitedHealth preserved its 2021 profit outlook from December and believes adjusted net earnings to be USD17.75 to $18.25 per share. This includes a USD1.80 a share blow as a result of coronavirus treatment and testing charges.