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Aetna Better Health names Verne Brizendine as CEO for California

March 25, 2021 | Health Insurance

Verne Brizendine, CEO of Aetna Better Health of California

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Aetna Better Health of California, the Medicaid managed care business of Aetna, a CVS Health company, today announced Verne Brizendine as the new CEO of the health plan. In this role, Brizendine will be responsible for the health plan’s operations and strategy to help members achieve better health outcomes. Aetna Better Health of California arranges for the delivery of health care services to families and individuals who are eligible for Medi-Cal, the state’s Medicaid program. The health plan serves approximately 33,000 members in San Diego and Sacramento counties.

Brizendine joined Aetna in 2019 as director of business development, bringing more than 30 years of leadership experience in the health care industry. He previously held various leadership roles with managed care companies, including Blue Shield of California, LA Care and Anthem. Throughout his career, he built longstanding partnerships with state and local officials, community stakeholders, health care providers and community-based organizations.

“Verne’s extensive knowledge and background in managed care, coupled with his strong track record at Aetna, will be instrumental in growing our California health plan,” said Lorry Bottrill, Southwest Territory Leader, Aetna Better Health & CEO, Mercy Care. “His leadership and commitment to assisting vulnerable populations will guide our strategic initiatives throughout the state as we continue to support Medi-Cal beneficiaries on their path to better health.”

Brizendine holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Stephen’s College. He serves as a Board member of the My Stuff Bags Foundation, a non-profit organization serving foster children in the U.S.

About Aetna Medicaid

Aetna Medicaid Administrators LLC (Aetna Medicaid), a CVS Health company, has over 30 years of experience managing the care of the most medically vulnerable, using innovative approaches and a local presence in each market to achieve both successful health care results and effective cost outcomes. Aetna Medicaid has particular expertise serving high-need Medicaid members, including those who are dually eligible for Medicaid and Medicare. Currently, Aetna Medicaid owns and/or administers Medicaid managed health care plans under the names of Aetna Better Health and other affiliate names. Together, these plans serve approximately 2.7 million people in 16 states, including Arizona, California, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Texas. For more information, see