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AMA urges appeals court to uphold decision blocking Anthem-Cigna merger: 5 key notes

In an article, the American Medical Association argued the federal appeals court overseeing the potential merger between Indianapolis-based Anthem and Bloomfield, Conn.-based Cigna should uphold the trial court's decision.

Here's what you should know.

1. A federal judge blocked the merger in February 2017. Anthem appealed the ruling, arguing that its merger would result in $2.4 billion consumer benefits. The AMA Litigation Center recently filed a brief urging the three-judge panel to uphold the lower court's ruling.

2. On March 24, 2017, Anthem said in appeals court that "consumers should rejoice" at the idea the merger could be approved, according to a Hartford Courant report.

3. The AMA and the Medical Society of the District of Columbia believes Anthem's proposed savings would "damage patient care, stifle innovation and cause patients to use more healthcare services."

The articles states, "Anthem's claim that the merger will enable it to offer a new product — Cigna's products at Anthem's prices — was contradicted by the evidence at trial and the experience of the market."

4. The AMA argues a merger for acquiring purchasing power would be harmful to the market and would be anticompetitive.

5. The AMA reached out to health experts on the matter and had 27 health economics, antitrust or competition policy professors file similar briefs opposing the measures. The AMA also had a 17-state medical society coalition engage with the National Association of Attorneys General to convince several state Attorney Generals to join the DOJ in blocking the merger.

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