Centene Corporation Announces Key Executive Appointments; William Scheffel, Richard Frederickson and Aron Halfin, M.D., Appointed to Newly Created Positions

Michael Lynch, M.D. Named Vice President of Medical Affairs at Corporate Office; Veteran Managers Patrick Rooney and Chuck Mangene Promoted

ST. LOUIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dec. 10, 2003--Centene Corporation (NYSE:CNC) today announced the following organizational and personnel development changes, which support its rapidly growing business:

  • -- William Scheffel was appointed to the newly created position of Senior Vice President & Controller. He will be responsible for accounting, tax and financial reporting for Centene, each of its health plans and its Specialty Division companies. Mr. Scheffel will report to Karey L. Witty, Centene's Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer.

  • -- Richard Frederickson has joined Centene's Operations Department as Vice President of SSI Product Development. In this newly created role, he is responsible for the development, implementation and monitoring of an SSI clinical paradigm, and will serve as the company's primary source of intellectual capital for the development and delivery of services to health plan members with complex needs. Mr. Frederickson reports to Joseph P. Drozda, Jr., M.D., Centene's Executive Vice President, Operations.

  • -- Aron Halfin, M.D., was named to the newly created position of Medical Director for Centene's Specialty Division. Dr. Halfin will be responsible for medical policy, have oversight of all Specialty Division Companies, including GPA, Script Assist and NurseWise, and will spearhead the Division's quality improvement initiatives. He will be based in Austin, Texas and report to John D. Tadich, Centene's Senior Vice President, Specialty Companies, at Centene Corporation's St. Louis headquarters.

  • -- Michael Lynch, M.D., joined the Centene corporate office as Vice President of Medical Affairs, reporting to Dr. Drozda. Dr. Lynch previously served as Regional Vice President of Medical Affairs for Managed Health System, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Centene Corporation and Wisconsin's largest Medicaid HMO.

  • -- Patrick J. Rooney, formerly Director of Health Plan Accounting, was promoted to Vice President of Health Plan Finance.

  • -- Chuck Mangene, formerly Director of Health & Claims Information Systems, has been named Vice President of Health & Claims Information Systems.

    "These appointments reflect the continuing development and expansion of our business operations. Each of these individuals has the professional expertise and management experience to ensure Centene's solid and predictable growth continues," said Michael F. Neidorff, Centene's President and Chief Executive Officer. "Dr. Halfin's appointment in particular reflects our commitment to building a balanced multi-line company in both the Medicaid Managed Care and Specialty Services arenas. With his extensive experience in behavioral health and managed care, Dr. Halfin will contribute significantly to the growth of these companies."

    Mr. Scheffel is a licensed certified public accountant with over 28 years of experience, including 16 years as a partner with Arthur Andersen LLP; he joined Centene from Ernst & Young LLP, where he was a partner. His extensive background in working with public companies and expertise in financial accounting and reporting, mergers and acquisitions and SEC rules and regulations will further bolster Centene's finance group. Mr. Scheffel is a graduate of the University of Illinois.

    Mr. Frederickson most recently served as Vice President of AMERIPLUS Operations in Virginia Beach, VA, where he had national SSI and long-term care product leadership responsibility. Prior to that time, he was Vice President, Medical Assistance for Health America-Coventry HealthCare Plans, before which he held (various/several) executive positions with Amerigroup Corporation and and United HealthCare Corporation. He holds a B.A. degree in Finance from the University of Illinois.

    Dr. Halfin joins Centene from Magellan Behavioral Health, where he most recently served as Chief Clinical Officer, East Division. Since 1996, he held a variety of leadership positions with Magellan and its predecessor companies. He was in private practice from 1985 to 1996. Dr. Halfin is a graduate of the University of Costa Rica School of Medicine and completed his psychiatric residency at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. He is Board Certified in Psychiatry and Neurology.

    Before joining Centene's Managed Health Systems subsidiary in 2001, Dr. Lynch was Associate Medical Director, Quality Improvement/Care Management for Aurora Health Care. He previously served as Vice President, Medical Affairs for Dean Health Plan and Senior Medical Director for United HealthCare of Wisconsin.

    Mr. Rooney joined Centene in 1998 as a Plan Controller. His healthcare background includes experience as a Corporate Controller and Accounting Manager with Mercy Health Plans, Inc., and as an accountant with Group Health Plans, a subsidiary of Coventry Health Care.

    Mr. Mangene, an 18-year veteran of the HMO information services field, has extensive knowledge in managed care system development and operations. Before joining Centene in August 1999, he served as Senior Vice President of Information Systems at Merit Behavioral Care, prior to which he was a director at Amisys Managed Care Systems.

    About Centene Corporation

    Centene Corporation provides managed care programs and related services to individuals receiving benefits under Medicaid, including Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). The company operates health plans in Texas, Wisconsin, Indiana and New Jersey. In addition, the company contracts with other healthcare organizations to provide specialty services including behavioral health, nurse triage and pharmacy compliance. Information regarding Centene is available via the Internet at www.centene.com.

    The second paragraph of this press release contains forward-looking statements that relate to future events and future performance of Centene. Subsequent events and developments may cause the company's expectations to change. The company disclaims any obligation to update this forward-looking information in the future. Matters subject to forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties, including economic, regulatory, competitive and other factors that may cause Centene's or its industry's actual results, levels of activity, performance or achievements to be materially different from any future results, levels of activity, performance or achievements expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. Actual results may differ from projections or estimates due to a variety of important factors, including Centene's ability to successfully integrate and manage its acquisitions, its ability to accurately predict and effectively manage health benefits and other operating expenses, competition, changes in health care practices, changes in federal or state laws or regulations, inflation, provider contract changes, new technologies, reduction in provider payments by governmental payors, major epidemics, disasters and numerous other factors affecting the delivery and cost of health care. The expiration, cancellation or suspension of Centene's Medicaid managed care contracts by state governments would also negatively affect Centene.

    CONTACT: Centene Corporation
    Michael F. Neidorff, 314-725-4477
    Investor Relations:
    Lisa M. Wilson, 212-759-3929

    SOURCE: Centene Corporation