Anthem to DOJ: Cigna merger will boost insurance market

Anthem filed papers to the U.S. Department of Justice Tuesday arguing its transaction with Cigna would cut consumer cost, expand coverage and fortify Affordable Care Act online exchanges, Bloomberg reported.

In the filing, Indianapolis-based Anthem said an acquisition of Bloomfield, Conn.-based Cigna would assist consumer access to health coverage, as it would allow expansion into areas the payers do not operate.

Anthem is the first insurer to respond to the DOJ after the department sued to block the insurer's $54 billion merger with Cigna and a $37 deal between Hartford, Conn.-based Aetna and Louisville, Ky.-based Humana last week. Monday Anthem requested the trial begin in October and Tuesday the insurer called out the DOJ in a full-page ad in The Washington Post.

Anthem CEO Joseph Swedish said the trial will probably last four months and he intends to extend the merger agreement deadline to April, Bloomberg reported. Cigna said it is reviewing its options.

More articles about payer issues:
Centene will not bid for Aetna-Humana assets
Cigna eyes ACA marketplaces in Chicago, East Coast
58 layoffs loom at University of Arizona Health Plans

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