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Cigna CEO defends Anthem deal, says consumer will still have choice

The Anthem-Cigna deal and a plan by Aetna Inc to buy Humana have come in the wake of the implementation of the Affordable Care Act and amid pressure on insurers to keep healthcare spending down for their biggest customers - employers and the U.S. government. But does that mean the consumers get better choice or not.

It appears that some large organisations have concerns and have written to congress:

In the past few weeks, both the American Medical Association and the American Hospital Association have issued written criticisms of the deal. Congress held a hearing on insurer competition last week and another hearing is scheduled in the Senate next week in which Anthem CEO Joseph Swedish and Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini are scheduled to appear.

The company expects the Department of Justice review to take 12 to 18 months during which it will look at the extent of their overlap in market share for Medicaid for the poor, Medicare Advantage for seniors, individual insurance, small employers and large employers. More

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