NU Online News Service, Dec. 15, 2004, 4:59 p.m. EST

A Louisville, Ky., managed care company is introducing Medicare preferred provider organization plans in 14 markets.[@@]

The company, Humana Inc., already has members in 368,000 Medicare managed care and Medicare fee-for-service plans in 15 states.

The new Humana PPO plans are in Atlanta; Austin, Texas; Baton Rouge, La.; Cincinnati; Corpus Christi, Texas; Jacksonville, Fla.; Kansas City, Mo.; Louisville, Ky.; New Orleans; Phoenix; San Antonio; Tampa, Fla.; and South Florida.

Managed care companies began fleeing from the Medicare program in the late 1990s, but the government has been trying to tempt them back in by changing the program rules and encouraging companies to set up PPO plans as well as health maintenance organization plans.