Aetna says BCBS had unfair advantage in North Carolina Medicaid contracts

Aetna is accusing North Carolina of unfairly awarding Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina a bid to help manage its new Medicaid program, according to local news station WRAL.

Aetna lost its bid to partake in North Carolina's managed Medicaid program in February when five other companies, including BCBS of North Carolina, won bids totaling $6 billion annually.

In a motion filed with the state's Office of Administrative Hearings on Sept. 18, Aetna claimed North Carolina's scoring system unfairly favored BCBS. Aetna alleged conflicts of interest between members of the evaluating committee and BCBS. Aetna asked a judge to toss out the contracts and restart the process, according to WRAL.

In a statement to the news station, a state spokesperson said it is "confident in the integrity and fairness of our procurement process," noting a judge already denied attempts by the insurers who lost bids to halt the process. BCBS also stood by the state's process.

"Blue Cross NC has confidence that the bid procurement process was conducted fairly and without bias, and it looks forward to continuing to serve the citizens of North Carolina," a spokesperson told WRAL.

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