The TakeCare history dates back to 1973 as Family Health Plan traveled to the shores of Guam from the United States at the request of the island’s Catholic Diocese and government. Its establishment on Guam, the largest of the Mariana Islands, marked the introduction of the region’s first group practice, pre-payment, and medical program as a staff-model health maintenance organization or HMO.
14 years later, Family Health Plan rebranded to FHP, and the Guam region was renamed the Asia Pacific region to reflect the health-plan expansion into the island of Saipan and the Northern Marianas.
The expansion saw the opening of the FHP Health Center on Saipan in 1988 to deliver medical services to about 2,000 members. The Center continued to grow steadily, incorporating dental services in 1989.
In 1991, FHP Asia Pacific inaugurated another medical center on Guam, named the FHP Dededo Medical Center. The Center responded to the medical and dental needs of northern members. With this inclusion in the FHP system, the FHP fiscal year ended with an unprecedented total enrollment numbers of 23,004 members.
More expansion projects followed in 1994, each designed to improve member services and convenience. A $2.5 million renovation plan found the redesign of the FHP Annex to incorporate more space for medical and dental services. The FHP administrative offices were also centralized for member convenience. That same year, FHP contracts with Philippines and the Honolulu Medical Group in Hawaii for self-referral, off-island, and primary care services for its members got underway.
With the community’s needs in mind, FHP continued to develop its products and services with the FHP Health Center in Saipan, adding optometry services and a full-service optical shop in 1995. Coinciding with this, a supplemental health services division of FHP Asia Pacific, Tropicare, was launched to provide health education, home health care, durable medical equipment (DME) and respiratory care services to both FHP members and non-members.
The growth of the FHP network across the region was reflected in the introduction of the health plan, Choice Plus™, in 1996. Marking the separation of FHP’s “plan” and “delivery” operations, Choice Plus™ provided access to an expanded network of healthcare providers on Guam and off-island. Its counterpart for delivery operations was initially HML, and subsequently renamed to the FHP Guam Medical Group and the FHP Saipan Medical Group.
That year, the FHP Asia Pacific region gained a record 2,500 medical members, pushing total medical membership numbers past the 40,000-member mark. Adding to their portfolio, the FHP Guam Medical Group signed a contract with major Japanese insurance companies to provide urgent care services for Guam tourists from Japan.
Further, PacifiCare Health Systems announced a definite Agreement and Plan of Reorganization with Fountain Valley-based FHP International, a managed health-care services company with more than 1.9 million members in 15 states and U.S. Territory of Guam.
One year later, PacifiCare Health Systems completed its $2.2 billion acquisition of FHP International Corporation. The combined company made PacifiCare Health Systems the nation’s fifth largest HMO company.
Following its acquisition, FHP Asia Pacific was officially renamed to PacifiCare Asia Pacific in 1998. Working with local companies to maintain good relations, PacifiCare then developed a new broker network including IIU, Perez Brothers and Calvo’s. The company also invested in new technology including an HMO software conversion system and a new telephone system including voicemail, ACD and UCD features to improve customer service and increase efficiency throughout the organization.
PacifiCare reached an all-time record breaking 52,000 members in 2000, and proceeded to add Melekau Insurance Agency and Guam National Insurance to its list of brokers. A year later, PacifiCare Health Insurance Company of Micronesia (PHICM), PacifiCare Asia Pacific, was formed to locally incorporate on Guam. PacifiCare Asia Pacific Insurance Brokers Inc. was then created to sell insurance products operating under PHICM. This was a big step that moved PacifiCare out of an HMO status into an insurance company. That same year, PHICM received a qualifying certificate from the Guam Economic Development Authority.
Additional expansion occurred for the company, including a joint venture with local doctors to form the Guam Surgi-Center; expansion of its warehouse facilities; an update to its medical records department with a state-of-the-art record filing system, and expansion of its Home Health services to accept other insurance carriers and Medicare.