Cigna Corp., Philadelphia, agreed to pay $19 million to settle lawsuits on behalf of 210,000 specialty healthcare providers, including acupuncturists, chiropractors and podiatrists, who claimed to have been shortchanged by the nation's largest health insurers. Under the deal, Cigna will create an $11.6 million fund to compensate providers, pay up to $7.5 million for plaintiff attorneys' fees and improve claims handling. The company did not admit wrong-doing in the proposed settlement, which must be approved by U.S. District Judge Federico Moreno in Miami. A hearing has not been scheduled. Cigna is the first insurer to announce a settlement with specialty providers in class-action litigation against the nation's leading managed-care companies. Last year, Aetna and Cigna agreed to spend $470 million and $540 million, respectively, to settle similar charges on behalf of 900,000 physicians. -- by Laura B. Benko
Cigna offers $19 million to settle provider suits
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