(Reuters) – Health insurer Anthem Inc, which earlier this month reported that it was hit by a massive cyberbreach, said on Tuesday that 8.8 million to 18.8 million people who were not its customers could be victims in the attack.
Anthem, the country’s second-largest health insurer, is part of a national network of independently run Blue Cross Blue Shield plans through which BCBS customers can receive medical services when they are in an area where BCBS is operated by a different company.
Feb 20 (Reuters) – The U.S. government on Friday proposed a
0.9 percent cut in payments to health insurers for 2016 Medicare
Advantage plans, which provide health benefits to more than 16
million elderly or disabled people.
When combined with other factors such as medical coding
adjustments by insurers, the payments could increase insurer
revenue by 1.1 percent, according to documents released by a
division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
NEW YORK, Feb 18 (Reuters) – Actavis Plc, a generic
drugmaker that has been steadily acquiring branded medicines,
said it will change its name to Allergan Inc after it completes
its planned $66 billion purchase of the Botox maker, signaling
its growing focus on patent-protected drugs.
Allergan’s medicine chest is chock full of branded drugs,
which command far higher prices than generics. They include
Botox, a $2.3 billion-a-year anti-wrinkle drug also used to
treat migraine headaches and other ailments. The company also
has a leading portfolio of eye treatments, facial fillers and
NEW YORK/BOSTON (Reuters) – Security experts are warning healthcare and insurance companies that 2015 will be the “Year of the Healthcare Hack,” as cybercriminals are increasingly attracted to troves of personal information held by U.S. insurers and hospitals that command high prices on the underground market.
Anthem Inc, the No. 2 U.S. health insurer, last week disclosed a massive breach of its database containing nearly 80 million records, prompting investigations by state and federal authorities. That hack followed a breach last year at hospital operator Community Health Systems, which compromised some 4.5 million records.
By Caroline Humer, Ransdell Pierson, Vidya L Nathan and Natalie Grover
(Reuters) – Pfizer Inc (PFE.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) said it would buy Hospira Inc (HSP.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) for about $15 billion to boost its portfolio of generic injectable drugs and copies of biotech medicines.
Pfizer is known for prescription medicines like impotence treatment Viagra and Lyrica for nerve pain, but many of its biggest brands, including cholesterol treatment Lipitor and painkiller Celebrex, have lost patent protection and are facing cheaper generics. The company needs new products to keep its earnings growing.
NEW YORK, Jan 28 (Reuters) – Top U.S. health insurers say
their businesses offering medical coverage under so-called
Obamacare are turning into profitable ventures and that they are
now aiming to be on par with other sought-after government
Two of the biggest insurers now say they could see hitting
profit margins of near 5 percent for these individual plans
created under the Affordable Care Act, often called Obamacare,
as costs for new customers have remained manageable so far.
By Caroline Humer
(Reuters) – UnitedHealth Group Inc, the largest U.S. health insurer, on Wednesday backed Gilead Sciences Inc’s Harvoni as the preferred hepatitis C treatment on its 2015 commercial drug coverage list, another victory for Gilead over competitor AbbVie Inc.
Gilead and AbbVie have been in a battle for hepatitis C market share since a new AbbVie drug was approved in December that challenges Gilead’s blockbusters. Insurers and pharmacy benefit managers have been striking deals for preferred or exclusive status in exchange for discounts for 2015.
NEW YORK (Reuters) – Gilead Sciences Inc and AbbVie Inc are in a price war over their hepatitis C treatments that is driving costs lower and has changed the way drugmakers price new medicines, a top executive for pharmacy benefit manager Express Scripts said on Thursday.
Gilead’s hepatitis C drug Harvoni, which can cure a majority of patients who take it, has a retail price of $94,500 and is now facing its first competition with AbbVie’s Viekira Pak, which was priced about $10,000 lower, or at $83,319.
(Reuters) – Aetna Inc, the third-largest U.S. health insurer, said it negotiated a discount with Gilead Sciences Inc for its hepatitis C treatment and will offer it as the preferred choice to nearly 11 million commercial customers.
Aetna, which posted an updated coverage policy on its website on Friday, said it believes the price it received for Gilead’s Sovaldi, and a newer combination treatment called Harvoni, is “competitive with other recently announced agreements for this class of therapy.” It would not detail the size of the discount.
Jan 16 (Reuters) – Aetna Inc, the third-largest U.S.
health insurer, said it has negotiated a discount with Gilead
Sciences Inc for its hepatitis C treatment and will
offer it as the preferred choice to its nearly 11 million
Aetna, which posted an updated coverage policy on its
website on Friday, said in a statement that it believes its
price is “competitive with other recently announced agreements
for this class of therapy.”