FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 14, 2005

Kevin Hall
www.governor.virginia.gov
(804) 225-4260


Joyce Larkin
UnitedHealth Group
(952) 936-3836
Christie Collins
VEDP
(804) 545-5805
GOVERNOR WARNER ANNOUNCES UNITEDHEALTH GROUP TO EXPAND OPERATIONS IN ROANOKE
-Company to bring new business, create 250 new jobs -


RICHMOND - Governor Mark R. Warner today announced that UnitedHealth Group will expand its operations in the City of Roanoke, creating 250 new jobs in addition to the company’s existing 160 jobs.

The expansion is in preparation of UnitedHealth Group’s involvement in the new Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit program beginning January 2006. UnitedHealth Group, through its Ovations business unit, has filed for approval to provide Medicare Prescription Drug offerings to Medicare beneficiaries in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and U.S. territories. The Roanoke operations center will provide service to Medicare recipients who purchase the AARP Medicare Rx Plan, which is managed by Ovations. In addition to these new responsibilities, the Roanoke facility will continue to provide customer support for a variety of senior health and well-being products.

“This expansion makes UnitedHealth Group one of Roanoke’s top healthcare employers,” said Governor Warner. “Ranked number one in FORTUNE Magazine’s 2005 list of Most Admired Healthcare Companies, we celebrate this renowned company’s decision to stay and flourish in Virginia.”

Headquartered in Minnetonka, Minnesota, UnitedHealth Group is a diversified Fortune 50 company that provides a broad spectrum of resources and services to help people achieve improved health and well-being through all stages of life. Ovations, a business unit of UnitedHealth Group, provides health and well-being services for individuals age 50 and older.

“UnitedHealth Group is focused on developing a Medicare prescription drug coverage offering that is consumer-friendly and easy-to-use. We are confident that with our employees in Roanoke serving as the first line of contact for our customers, we will achieve that goal,” said Tom Paul, Ovations’ Chief Pharmacy Officer. “We would like to thank the Governor and the City and people of Roanoke for creating a strong climate for growth. We value the talented and dedicated individuals who currently work for us and look forward to recruiting additional high-quality employees from this community.”

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with the City of Roanoke to secure the project for Virginia. Governor Warner approved a $100,000 grant from the Governor’s Opportunity Fund to assist the City of Roanoke with the project. The Virginia Department of Business Assistance will provide training assistance through its Workforce Services Program.

“The city is pleased to retain one of its existing businesses,” said Brian Townsend, Director of Planning, Building and Economic Development, City of Roanoke. “The Governor’s Opportunity Fund ensures the job retention and training of City residents for existing and newly created positions.”

UnitedHealth Group has created an online job fair for anyone interested in learning about employment opportunities in Roanoke (www.uhgroanoke.com). Visitors to the online job fair can self-qualify for position openings and, if qualified, automatically schedule a convenient appointment for the next step in the recruitment process.

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