Hillary Clinton is targeting large health insurance companies as part of her push to lower healthcare costs, saying on Wednesday that she has “serious concerns” about proposed mergers in the industry.
“As we see more consolidation in health care, among both providers and insurers, I’m worried that the balance of power is moving too far away from consumers,” said Clinton in a statement. “I have serious concerns about the proposed mergers between Anthem and Cigna, and between Aetna and Humana.”
The two deals would combine some of the largest health insurance companies in the country, and critics have expressed concern that the mergers would reduce competition and choices in healthcare plans, and could also raise premiums. The Anthem-Cigna deal is worth $54 billion, while the Aetna-Humana deal is worth $37 billion.
Clinton spoke out on Wednesday, saying that as President she would strengthen antitrust regulation at the Justice Department and the Federal Trade Commission, a position she also made clear in an op-ed on Tuesday.
By appointing “aggressive regulators” to take on industry concentration, Clinton said she would build “a pro-competition approach that is good for businesses large and small who want to compete on a level playing field and for consumers who should gain more choices.”
Clinton has advocated for stricter regulation of pharmaceutical companies and Wall Street institutions, though she has taken a more moderate approach than her competitors for the Democratic nomination.
“It’s our job to rein in the excesses of capitalism so that it doesn’t run amok and doesn’t cause the kind of inequities we’re seeing in our economic system,” Clinton said last week during the first Democratic debate.
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