Quarterly report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d)

Comprehensive Earnings (Differences Between Net Earnings And Total Comprehensive Earnings) (Details)

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Comprehensive Earnings (Differences Between Net Earnings And Total Comprehensive Earnings) (Details) (USD $)
In Thousands
3 Months Ended 9 Months Ended
Sep. 30, 2011
Sep. 30, 2010
Sep. 30, 2011
Sep. 30, 2010
Comprehensive Earnings [Abstract]        
Net earnings $ 28,213 $ 23,200 $ 79,099 $ 71,952
Reclassification adjustment, net of tax 195 1,516 415 1,552
Change in unrealized gains on investments, net of tax (900) (1,255) (361) 761
Total change (705) 261 54 2,313
Comprehensive earnings 27,508 23,461 79,153 74,265
Comprehensive (losses) earnings attributable to the noncontrolling interests (774) 538 (2,007) 2,515
Comprehensive earnings attributable to Centene Corporation $ 28,282 $ 22,923 $ 81,160 $ 71,750