DOJ, states sue Anthem, Aetna to block mega deals: 7 things to know

The U.S. Department of Justice and attorneys general from several states filed lawsuits against Anthem and Aetna out of concern their proposed acquisitions would impede health insurance competition.

1. The DOJ's lawsuits could halt Indianapolis-based Anthem's proposed $54 billion acquisition of Bloomfield, Conn.-based Cigna and Hartford, Conn.-based Aetna's $37 billion acquisition of Louisville, Ky.-based Humana.

2. Aetna and Humana said they will fight to complete their deal, according to Bloomberg. Cigna cast doubt on whether its deal can be completed, while Anthem noted preparation for a court fight and openness to a settlement with the Justice Department.

3. Eleven states — California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, New Hampshire, New York, Tennessee and Virginia — and the District of Columbia joined the department's challenge to Anthem-Cigna. 

4. Eight states — Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia — and the District of Columbia joined the Aetna-Humana suit.

5. In its lawsuit against Anthem and Cigna, the DOJ wrote competition between insurers like Anthem and Cigna ensures employers and individuals can purchase high-quality policies at affordable prices. However, "competition is now at risk."

6. In its lawsuit against Aetna and Human, the DOJ wrote the deal "would lead to higher health insurance prices, reduced benefits, less innovation and worse service for over a million Americans."

7. Read more about the DOJ's challenge to the mergers here

More articles about payer issues:
DOJ to fight Anthem, Aetna insurer deals: 10 things to know
UnitedHealth's surprising 2Q earnings powered by Optum: 4 things to know
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