Cuomo Gets Aetna to Contribute $20 Million to Database
Tuesday Andrew Cuomo announced he'd gotten Ingenix and subsidiary UnitedHealth Group to give up $50 million* to create a more transparent, independent database for calculating out-of-network health care costs than the one they'd been running. Today he announced that Aetna -- one of the health care companies that uses Ingenix' database, and also one of the companies Cuomo subpoenaed in his prosecution of Ingenix -- would kick in $20 million for the database, and cease to use Ingenix's. Cigna and Wellpoint's Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield, the other subpoenaed companies, are probably expected to take the hint. Cuomo said he won't rule out further action, and that "the tide is turning against the corrupted reimbursement system that took hundreds of millions of dollars from the pockets of patients nationwide."
(*Update: We earlier reported that UHG's database settlement was for $350 million; that's actually the amount they have agreed to pay to settle class-action lawsuits from doctors and patients who say they had been under-reimbursed. $50 million goes separately to the database.)
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