Two mergers of giant health insurers, announced on the same day, are making physicians nervous.
On Oct. 27, Indianapolis-based Anthem and WellPoint Health Networks, based in Thousand Oaks, Calif., announced plans to create the largest managed care company in the U.S., with almost 26 million enrollees.
Also that day, the current largest health insurer, Minnetonka, Minn.-based UnitedHealth Group, said it would raise its membership to 20 million by acquiring Mid Atlantic Medical Services, the Rockville, Md.-based company better known as MAMSI.
Donald Palmisano, M.D., president of the AMA, warns that the mergers are creating "a health care system dominated by a few publicly-traded companies," and urges that "these mergers should be highly scrutinized."
Federal officials say they will examine both proposals to make sure competition would not be harmed by large gains in local market share.
Click here to see map of potential overlaps.