CVS to buy Aetna following Sunday vote - WFSB 3 Connecticut

CVS to buy Aetna following Sunday vote

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(MGN photo) (MGN photo)
(WFSB file) (WFSB file)

Aetna’s Board of Director’s approved the roughly $69 billion deal that helps the drugstore chain expand health services, according to the Associated Press and Reuters.

The $69 billion deal will be this year’s largest corporate acquisition, said Reuters, and the largest health insurance deal in history. 

It will combine one of the nation’s largest pharmacy benefits managers (PBMs) and pharmacy operators with one of its oldest health insurers, whose far-reaching business ranges from employer healthcare to government plans nationwide, wrote Reuters.

In a news release, both companies, said,

"The transaction fills an unmet need in the current health care system and presents a unique opportunity to redefine access to high-quality care in lower cost, local settings -- whether in the community, at home, or through digital tools."

Quinnipac University business professor, David Cadden told Eyewitness News that it's a smart move for the companies. "This is a vertical merger. One is in the supply chain and I think that has a much better chance of being accepted by the Department of Justice," said Cadden. 

Cadden said that CVS stands to gain more power to negotiate with pharmaceuticals companies to get drugs, and the company will likely place a bigger emphasis on preventative health care, saving both the company and customers money in the long run. 

"You’ll see either some decline or more likely a slower growth rate in the increase of premiums," Cadden. 

When asked what prompted the companies' merger, Cadden said, most likely retail giant Amazon. 

"The minute Amazon starts talking about pharmacies and selling particular types of drugs through Amazon, everyone else that’s in the retail or the commercial end of pharmacy industry is going to sit up and pay note," explained Cadden.

"I think CVS took this seriously and I think that’s why they’re coming up with the linkage."

Cadden said going forward, it should come as no surprise if other large companies to begin to merge. 

Spokesperson for Governor Malloy, Kelly Donnelly, told Eyewitness News that impact of this acquisition is unknown at this time.  "Until details are released and officials have had a chance to review them, it's premature to assess the potential impact it might have. The administration will continue to monitor this potential deal as it develops to ensure that the best interests of consumers and Connecticut are protected," said Donnelly. 

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