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State Comptroller Petitions To Intervene As A Party in Blue Cross/Anthem Merger

Contact: Bob King
860-703-3311 or 860-702-3300

State Comptroller Nancy Wyman today filed to intervene as a party in the proposed Blue Cross/Blue Shield merger with Anthem Insurance Companies, citing concerns over premium increases, Blue Cross/Blue Shield asset distribution, and the overall economic impact of the merger on the State of Connecticut. Status as a party, if granted by the Insurance Commissioner, will allow Comptroller Wyman to formally participate in the public hearing scheduled for June 24, as well as receive all documentation regarding the matter that the Insurance Department has assembled. Wyman voted no on the merger as a policyholder at the March 27, 1997 BC/BS shareholders meeting.

"Given the potential of the proposed merger to affect the cost of health care in Connecticut, I am obligated to try to ensure that the needs and interest of our state's citizens are adequately addressed," said Wyman.

As State Comptroller, Wyman is charged with the responsibility for procuring health insurance for active and retired state employees. She is also constitutionally obligated to monitor and review state financial needs. Wyman is petitioning to intervene as a party to "protect the legal rights, duties and privileges of the State of Connecticut as a policyholder and to determine whether the proposed merger is in the public interest of the taxpayers of this state."

Among the issues Wyman plans to address as an intervenor are whether and what amount of BC/BS assets should be used for particular charitable purposes; the potential effect of the merger on premiums, given the experience of BC/BS - Anthem mergers in other states; and the social and economic impact of the proposed merger on employment, access to health care, and compensation for BC/BS executives.

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For Immediate Release
June 16, 1997

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