In past posts, i have documented some of Cigna’s deficiencies that have caused the federal government to suspend it from signing up new Medicare Advantage customers. Cigna and Anthem, the company that runs the Blue Cross plans in many states in the US are planning a merger. This would be a merger of two of the most poorly run companies in the United States. Would the merged company be any better?
With a little digging, I’ve learned that Cigna is not the only partner in this proposed merger that is dysfunctional. Anthem’s performance may be just as bad. For example, the California State auditor found that 23 percent of the physician listings in Anthem’s Medi-Cal directory for Fresno County are inaccurate. The State of California is not happy with the service that Anthem is providing the state’s residents.
The proposed merger and others would reduce the competition among health insurance companies. This merger would create the health insurance company with the largest enrollment in the nation with 53 million policy holders. Another proposed merger between Aetna and Humana would create another insurance giant with 33 million health insurance companies. They would compete with United Health, currently the largest health insurer with 46 million policy holders. Together, the three insurance monstrosities would have 132 million policy holders or about 40 percent of the population of the United States. These mergers do not strike me as a good idea.
Changing the subject, my latest book, the novel Running for President is now on sale as a Kindle ebook on Amazon. It will be available for download on March 11 and will be available on that date to anyone who orders it in advance. Details are available by clicking on the image of the book’s cover in the left sidebar of this blog.