UnitedHealth buys plan from Tufts, Harvard Pilgrim to address antitrust concerns

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Tufts Health Plan has to divest one of its subsidiaries so its merger with Harvard Pilgrim Health Care can move forward, according to the Department of Justice. UnitedHealth Group has already come through as the buyer.

To alleviate any antitrust concerns, the department said Dec. 14 it would require Harvard Pilgrim and Tufts to divest Tufts Health Freedom Plan, a commercial health insurance business in New Hampshire. The department approved UnitedHealth as the new owner of the plan. Financial details of the transaction weren't disclosed.

The divestiture comes after the Department of Justice's antitrust division and the New Hampshire Office of Attorney General sued to block the proposed merger Dec. 14. The sale of Tufts Health Freedom Plan to UnitedHealth resolves the complaint. 

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