UnitedHealth and Change Healthcare — Why We’re Saying “NO” and You Should Too
PUTTRx Medium/PUTT Blog
In the world of Big Healthcare mergers and acquisitions, it’s deja vu all over again.
The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) is investigating UnitedHealth Group’s proposed purchase of Change Healthcare, self-described in its Wikipedia entry as “a provider of revenue and payment cycle management and clinical information exchange solutions, connecting payers, providers, and patients in the U.S. healthcare system. The name also refers to a company founded in 2007 which subsequently became part of the current conglomerate.”
One would think that 2-sentence description alone would provide the DOJ just cause for stopping the acquisition, but perhaps the DOJ, like most of the country, doesn’t quite understand the implications if Change were to enfold itself into the UnitedHealth conglomerate. (See this article by NCPA CEO Doug Hoey for one possible explanation why giant corporate mergers are so difficult to stop in the U.S.).
There are many reasons we oppose this acquisition continued integration means fewer competitors and less choice for end users of healthcare data services.. Continue Reading
ACROSS THE NATION
Doctors: Decisions by PBMs make vital drugs unaffordable for many patients
The Columbus Dispatch
June 14, 2021
Dr. Stephanie Ott’s eyes tell the story of Americans’ frustrating struggles to obtain essential prescription drugs.
They moisten above her multi-hued mask almost to the point of tears as she describes a patient with crippling rheumatoid arthritis taking her first steps in years after successful drug treatment.
..But the doctor's eyes fill with anger as she relates how a Lupus patient was denied insurance coverage for a drug Ott prescribed, wound up in the hospital and remains on dialysis to this day.
And the Lancaster physician's visage hardens even more while diagnosing the cause of this mess: Multibillion-dollar pharmacy benefit managers and health insurers making decisions about which drugs should be covered by insurance based on what she says is corporate greed rather than medical need.
“It’s not that (a drug) didn’t work. It’s just that somebody’s profits got in the way.."