(CBS Connecticut) — The department of Justice today filed a federal anti-trust lawsuits in an effort to block two major health insurance mergers. One involves Bloomfield-based Cigna, the other involved Hartford-based Aetna.
Connecticut is among the states that have joined the Justice Department in filing the lawsuit against Cigna and its merger partner Anthem. Connecticut did not join the lawsuit against the Aetna-Humana merger.
In court paperwork, federal authorities and the states write that the deal “would combine two of the few remaining commercial health-insurance options for businesses and individuals in markets throughout the country.”
The justice department and the states argue that the merger “would substantially lessen competition, harming millions of American consumers, doctors and hospitals.”
They argue that competition in the health insurance field is at risk, and that two separate mergers, one involving Cigna and the other involving Hartford-based Aetna would reduce the five big insurance companies to just three.
Federal authorities say the 54-billion dollar deal would be the largest merger in the history of the health insurance industry.
A call was left with Cigna seeking comment.