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Major health insurers to combine

 |  March 13, 2019

Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina and Cambia Health Solutions, the parent of Regence Blues plans in Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Utah, are joining forces to combine corporate and other back-end services under the Cambia name.

The move will draw close national attention because both are members of the Blue Cross Blue Shield group of insurers, which includes 36 companies. Collectively, the Blue insurers are a unique and powerful force in the industry, covering more than 100 million Americans, with deep local market share and a key role in the Affordable Care Act marketplaces. But in recent years the Blue insurers have largely sidestepped industry consolidation that created massive national players, with many remaining independent firms focused on just one state.

Lately, major mergers among Blue insurers “have been once-in-a-blue-moon types of transactions,” said Deep Banerjee, an analyst with S&P Global Ratings. “If there is a transaction, it does open the doors for others to follow….It absolutely can create momentum.”

Full Content: Wall Street Journal

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