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NY Transportation Authority Sues Blue Cross Over $2.7B Antitrust Deal

 |  November 4, 2021

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority and New York’s other transportation agencies filed federal antitrust claims in Manhattan against the Blue Cross and Blue Shield health insurance network, saying they had opted out of a multidistrict class action that settled for nearly $2.7 billion.

According to Bloomberg, the suit targets the BCBS Association and more than three dozen affiliates, accusing them of basing their business model on an unlawful agreement to carve up the nationwide health insurance market into regional “service areas.”

The market allocation agreement “stifled or outright removed competition,” leading to inflated administrative fees for self-funded insurance plans like those offered by the transportation agencies, according to the complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

A BCBS Association spokesperson told Bloomberg Law in a statement Thursday that the organization is “unable to provide specific details on active litigation.”

But “Blue Cross Blue Shield plans remain focused on the goal we have had for more than 90 years: improving access to quality health care for all Americans and the health of our local communities,” the statement said.

The allegations echo claims that have been advancing for years in a federal court in Alabama, where health plan subscribers and the BCBS affiliates are seeking final approval from Judge R. David Proctor for the $2.67 billion settlement he tentatively signed off on in December 2020.

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