Humana, Louisville, Ky., reached a proposed settlement with Cincinnati-area doctors who sued Humana and three other insurers last year for allegedly conspiring to reduce reimbursement. Under the proposed settlement, Humana would increase physician reimbursement by $20 million in 2004, $15 million in 2005 and $10 million in 2006. It also would create a compliance committee to monitor payment rates for at least three years starting in 2007. The company admitted no wrongdoing. The settlement awaits approval by state courts in Ohio and Kentucky. Aetna, Anthem and UnitedHealth Group remain defendants.
Separately, Health Net, Woodland Hills, Calif., agreed to pay $137 million to settle a lawsuit alleging that the insurer misrepresented the financial health of a workers' compensation unit it sold in 1998 to Superior National Insurance Group, Calabasas, Calif. The lawsuit was filed in 2000, shortly after Superior was seized by state regulators and filed for bankruptcy protection. Superior accused Health Net of making misleading statements about the unit's reserves and sought to undo the $285 million purchase. -- by Laura B. Benko