Indianapolis-based Anthem Inc. (NYSE: ANTM) has agreed to acquire Beacon Health Options in Boston. Anthem says Beacon is the largest independently-held behavioral health organization in the country, serving more than 36 million people throughout all 50 states. The companies did not disclose a price for the acquisition. Anthem Chief Executive Officer Gail Boudreaux says the deal plays into the insurance provider’s goal to focus on "the needs of the whole person."

Anthem says the acquisition will enhance its existing behavioral health business with Beacon’s support and management systems. Beacon will operate within Anthem’s Diversified Business Group. CEO Russell Petrella and other Beacon executives will join Anthem as part of the deal.

"With an extensive track record in behavioral health, Beacon fits well with our strategy to better manage the needs of populations with chronic and complex conditions, and deliver integrated whole health solutions," said Boudreaux in a release. "Together with Beacon, we will enhance our capabilities to serve state partners, health plans and employer groups as they seek to address consumer behavioral health needs."

Anthem expects the deal to close in the fourth quarter of this year.

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