CVS Buying Aetna Insurance For $14 Billion

CVS Is Said to Agree to Buy Aetna, Reshaping Health Care Industry

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CVS Health (CVS) has plans that reach far beyond filling your prescription.

"Delrahim was very clear in his concerns about behavioral decrees and then put his money where his mouth is when he brought the AT&T case", Kully said.

Health care consolidation has not always benefited consumers, but CVS CEO Larry Merlo told The Wall Street Journal that it wants to lower costs for customers. "We view this deal as offensive by both companies, looking to a more vertically integrated, consumer directed, value-based care delivery future, and not a response to any threat from Amazon", Hill said. So was a deal between two other insurers - Anthem and Cigna. "We have the ability to begin to bend that cost curve and at the same time help people achieve their best health".

The deal, announced Sunday evening, will push the drugstore chain more forcefully in a direction it has been heading for years, according to Wall Street analysts. Customers can get physicals, flu shots or treatments for sinus infections at the clinics. The deal comes at a time when the future of the health care industry is up in the air. Expect that trend to continue as the drugstore switches more from selling products in its stores to services that can't be bought online, where retailers face formidable competition from the likes of Amazon.

The vision is that customers, especially those covered by Aetna insurance policies, will seek more of their basic health care at an expanded CVS clinic.

The mammoth acquisition pairs a company that runs more than 9,700 drugstores with an insurer covering around 22 million people.

A combined CVS-Aetna will reorder those options, leaving Express Scripts as the only standalone company big enough to easily provide pharmacy benefits to top employers. The company might open more clinics or add services such as eye care or hearing aid centers.

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A condition to an approval could be measures preventing Aetna from steering patients to CVS pharmacies over competitors such as Walgreens, said Rie, who noted that CVS may be better off if the FTC takes the review. A clinic visit also can be cheaper than a $100 doctor visit for someone who doesn't have insurance, but they have drawbacks.

"When you walk into CVS there's the pharmacy".

Jessy Tatenco, 23, buys household items and over-the-counter medications for his three children at CVS. "I think it creates more coordination across the different health insurance systems", Richardson said. "Many are pushing for more health care services to happen in pharmacies, and this is one mechanism to make that happen". The Justice Department's new antitrust chief, Makan Delrahim, has criticized past settlements that allowed vertical deals with behavioral restrictions. The nation's largest health insurer also runs clinics and doctor's offices. Bertolini will be on the combined company's board but won't be in charge of Aetna unit. Over time, a bulked-up CVS may gain more negotiating leverage over prices, but it is hard the say how much would trickle down to customers.

Aetna (aet) shareholders stand to receive $207 per share in the deal with CVS (cvs), the companies said.

The deal still has to pass regulatory scrutiny but CVS expects the deal to save a potential $750 million in the second full-year after it passes.

The only pricier deals involving companies based our six-state region were: Bell Atlantic Corp.'s purchase of Conn. -based GTE Corp., which was valued at $71.3 billion and completed in 2000; and Conn. -based Charter Communications Inc.'s purchase of Time Warner Cable Inc., which was valued at $78.4 billion and completed in 2016. Regulators also sued to stop the Aetna's approximately $34 billion purchase of rival Humana Inc. - a deal that fell apart earlier this year. PBMs like Optum and CVS's Caremark help manage prescription drug plans for commercial health insurers.

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