Plan's Participation Benefits 433,000 Providers Nationwide

Washington, D.C./Minneapolis, MN - 5/24/04

UnitedHealthcare has joined a growing number of health plans across the country offering a unique solution to the burdensome task of provider credentialing. The Council for Affordable Quality Healthcare (CAQH), a not-for-profit alliance of the nation's leading health plans and networks, announced that UnitedHealthcare will participate in Universal Credentialing DataSource, an online service to help physicians and other healthcare providers more easily and cost-effectively provide required credentialing information to healthcare organizations.

Universal Credentialing DataSource provides a fast, free and easy way for practitioners to securely submit their credentialing information to multiple health plans and networks by entering their information just one time. Application data can be submitted anytime through the convenience of the Internet or by fax.

"We are always looking for ways to improve the credentialing process for providers and their staffs," said Stephan Rodgers, Chief Operating Officer of UnitedHealth Networks. Universal Credentialing DataSource is a solution that works well with UnitedHealthcare's business philosophy of administrative simplicity for our physicians and providers. We're confident that the providers with whom we contract can realize significant time and resource savings. We are pleased to be a part of this collaborative effort to benefit our providers."

Today, nearly 90,000 providers nationwide have registered with CAQH. The data is maintained in a secure, state-of-the-art data center, and is only made available to health plans and networks that have been authorized by each practitioner. Providers who contract with UnitedHealthcare will now be able use this time-saving service to meet credentialing and re-credentialing requirements.

"The members of CAQH are delighted to have UnitedHealthcare join the more than 30 healthcare organizations already participating in Universal Credentialing DataSource," said John W. Rowe, M.D., chairman of CAQH and chairman and CEO of Aetna. "By working together, we are transforming the process of credentialing into a quick, efficient task that benefits providers and health plans alike."

To create Universal Credentialing DataSource, CAQH worked with providers, health plans and networks, professional associations, insurance regulators and accreditation associations. Ingenix, a UnitedHealth Group company and one of the nation's largest credentialing solutions vendors, was contracted by CAQH to build Universal Credentialing DataSource and today provides operational and technology support for the system.

The service first launched in Virginia and Colorado in March 2002, and it is now available to providers in 43 states and the District of Columbia.

About CAQH
The Council for Affordable Quality Healthcare (CAQH) is a not-for-profit alliance of health plans and networks that promotes collaborative initiatives to help make healthcare more affordable, share knowledge to improve the quality of care, and make administration easier for physicians and their patients.

About United Healthcare
UnitedHealthcare (www.unitedhealthcare.com) is a business unit of parent company UnitedHealth Group, Inc., a Fortune 100 company. UnitedHealth Group, headquartered in Minnetonka, Minn., is an innovative leader in the health and well-being industry, serving more than 50 million Americans. Through the UnitedHealth Group family of companies, UnitedHealthcare contributes outstanding clinical insight, paired with consumer-friendly services and advanced technology, to help people achieve optimal health.

Jackie Erspamer

Debora Spano
(401) 732-7374

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