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LETTERS

Paying a Premium in WellPoint Deal

July 04, 2004

Rather than being concerned about $356 million in bonuses that WellPoint Health Networks Inc.'s executives might get after the purchase by Anthem Inc., we should wonder where Anthem got the $16 billion to acquire WellPoint in the first place ("What's the Motive in Acquiring WellPoint?" June 17).

It is evident that Anthem got the money by continuously increasing the premiums it charges patients, business owners and the government to provide healthcare and simultaneously decreasing the amount of money paid to actual providers of healthcare services: the doctors and hospitals.

Our healthcare system needs radical surgery.

Dr. Richard E. Horowitz

Los Angeles

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It sickens me to see that while WellPoint has been raising premiums because of the "rising costs of healthcare," those rising costs were due to the significant increases in executive compensation, and less so due to the costs of actually providing healthcare to Blue Cross' members.

Linda Dater

Foothill Ranch

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