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West Virginia selects Coventry health care to provide retiree health benefits

Coventry Health Care, Inc. (NYSE:CVH) today announced that it was selected by the state of West Virginia's Public Employees Insurance Agency (PEIA) as the state's Medicare Advantage plan to provide health insurance for its 35,000 retirees effective July 1, 2007.

"We are extremely pleased to expand our relationship with PEIA," said Fran Soistman, Jr., executive vice president of Coventry Health Care. "Coventry Health Care and its Charleston-based Carelink Health Plan have a long-standing relationship with PEIA's active employees, so we look forward to also serving its retirees and spouses." In addition to PEIA, Coventry serves approximately 80,000 other West Virginians through its commercial, Medicare Advantage and Medicaid programs.

"The goal is to take care of our retirees who have taken care of the state over the years, and with Coventry's health plan and their national presence, we can do just that," said Ted Cheatham, director of West Virginia Public Employees Insurance Agency. "Not only does this help us preserve the level of benefits for our retirees, but it helps the state slow the growth of future liabilities in funding retiree benefits. It's a win for our retirees, our state and our taxpayers."

Under the customized retiree benefit plan, both medical and prescription drug (Medicare Part D) coverage will be offered, including several drugs excluded from the Part D formularies. There is freedom to choose any provider with this plan, along with access to a 24-hour nurse line, enhanced clinical programs (voluntary disease and case management programs), and fitness programs. The retiree benefit plan also will offer free health risk assessments, social worker support and targeted support for those with serious medical needs.

Governmental agencies, faced with a new Governmental Accounting Standards Board rule (GASB) in 2007, are now required to disclose the value of liabilities associated with retiree health benefits. Medicare Advantage products provide an effective solution for employers with post-employment health care obligations.

Coventry Health Care ( is a national leader in senior health care, serving more than 150,000 Medicare Advantage members and nearly 700,000 Part D stand-alone members through its Advantra programs. Based in Bethesda, Maryland, Coventry provides a full range of risk and fee-based health care products and services to a broad cross section of individuals, employers and government-funded groups, as well as other insurance carriers and administrators.

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