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Anthem-Cigna deal could improve competition

Anthem-Cigna deal could improve competition

Three judges heard appellate arguments from Anthem on March 24, as the insurer pled its case against a district court’s ruling blocking its merger with Cigna, Bloomberg BNA reports.

Here are four takeaways from the hearing.

1. One judge in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit said if Indianapolis-based Anthem’s merger with Bloomfield, Conn.-based Cigna led to $2.4 billion in medical cost savings for consumers, as the insurer has argued, it could be beneficial.

“That seems like an improvement in competition and consumer welfare,” U.S. Circuit Judge Brett Kavanaugh said, according to the report. Anthem has said a merger with Cigna would allow the resulting entity to transfer cost savings to its policyholders due to increased negotiating power over physicians and hospitals.

2. However, Bloomberg reports Judge Kavanaugh cited problems with Anthem’s case. He referenced the district court’s determination of facts that Anthem’s predicted cost savings were speculative and could be produced through other venues.

3. Anthem lawyer Christopher Curran countered that argument by saying the district court did not use correct legal standards when determining the predicted cost savings to consumers, according to the report….

 

Continue reading this article at Becker’s Hospital Review

 

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