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AMA, Medical Society of the State of NY implore regulators to block Anthem-Cigna merger — 4 highlights

The American Medical Association and Medical Society of the State of New York stood before the New York State Department of Financial Services to ask state regulators to reject the Anthem-Cigna merger, according to DotMed.

Here are four highlights:

1. During the hearing, the AMA and MSSNY said the merger would increase costs for consumers while threatening healthcare access and quality.

2. AMA presented officials with an analysis, which detailed the state's commercial health insurance markets and analyzed the merger's impact on competition based on federal antitrust guidelines. The analysis found the merger would increase Anthem's market power to anticompetitive levels in Long Island and would also decrease competition in the New York City metropolitan area and Hudson Valley.

3. Malcolm Reid, MD, president of MSSNY, said the New York health plans are currently narrow and allowing the merger to come to fruition would significantly increase premiums.

4. Henry Allen, an AMA's antitrust attorney, said Anthem's claim that it would truncate healthcare costs through eliminating inefficiencies is unfounded. Rather, he says, "economic studies have shown that rather than passing any benefits from efficiencies to consumers, health insurer mergers actually result in higher premiums."

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