Former Georgia Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine isn’t a big fan of pending mergers in the health insurance sector. Aetna announced plans to acquire Humana and Anthem said that it would be buying Cigna which would consolidate most healthcare coverage business into three major players: UnitedHealthcare, the new Aetna, and the new Anthem.
In an interview with Georgia Health News, Oxendine commented that the mergers would limit competition which, in the end, doesn’t benefit the consumer.
“Three is not competitive,’’ Oxendine told GHN last week in an interview. “My personal opinion is that it would be very bad for consumers.”
Oxendine says he believes commissioners in every state “should be extremely concerned” about the two mergers. They should look at both deals in tandem, not separately, he added.
“Prices are already going up’’ under the Affordable Care Act, he said.
The article states that he has not talked to current Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens. Oxendine has also been active in the healthcare arena since he has left office. Recently, according to the article, he has filed suit against Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia citing that the insurer has fraudulently been charging higher premiums while simultaneously cutting out-of-network benefit payments to medical providers.