CVS, Aetna tout $69 billion deal as boon for consumers, but pharmacies object

CVS Health and Aetna on Thursday asked the Connecticut Insurance Department to approve their $69 billion merger, while independent pharmacists told the regulators the company resulting from the merger would threaten their businesses.

CVS Health and Aetna on Thursday asked the Connecticut Insurance Department to approve their $69 billion merger, while independent pharmacists told the regulators the company resulting from the merger would threaten their businesses. CVS already has a broad presence in Connecticut, noted Tom Moriarty, executive vice president and general counsel of CVS, and its acquisition of Aetna is a "natural extension of our commitment to put consumers at the center of their health care," he said. Karen Lynch, president of Aetna, said the union with CVS is the "next and certainly the most important step in our own journey to really put consumers at the center of their care."
Nathan Tinker, CEO of the Connecticut Pharmacists Association, said the industry group is concerned the combination of companies such as the CVS-Aetna merger will lead to higher costs, reduce patient choice, and "drive independent pharmacies out of business." He called for state legislation to be enacted that requires pricing transparency and allows for regular and aggressive audits.