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BUSINESS
May 22, 2013 | By Chad Terhune, Los Angeles Times
Some prominent health insurers, including industry giant UnitedHealth Group Inc., are not participating in California's new state-run health insurance market, possibly limiting the number of choices for millions of consumers. UnitedHealth, the nation's largest private insurer, Aetna Inc. and Cigna Corp. are sitting out the first year of Covered California, the state's insurance exchange and a key testing ground nationally for a massive coverage expansion under the federal healthcare law. Meanwhile, the biggest insurers in the state - Kaiser Permanente, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of California - are all expected to participate in the state-run market for individual health coverage.
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ENTERTAINMENT
November 11, 2013 | By Meg James
Louis J. Briskman plans to retire next month from his role as general counsel of CBS Corp. A mainstay of the broadcasting company, Briskman first joined CBS in 1975 when it was Westinghouse Electric Corp.  He has served as the top lawyer for four public corporations, including Aetna Inc., Group W (the broadcasting subsidiary of Westinghouse) and Westinghouse Electric.  After his stint at Aetna, Briskman rejoined CBS in September 2005, just four months before the CBS breakup with Viacom Inc.  At that point, CBS became a separate publicly traded company.
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BUSINESS
June 18, 2013 | By Chad Terhune
Aetna Inc. said it would stop selling individual health insurance policies in California next month, and nearly 50,000 existing policyholders will have to find new coverage by January. The company's announcement Monday comes a month after it opted not to participate in California's new state-run insurance market for consumers, a key component of the new federal healthcare law. Aetna was a distant fourth in the state's individual health market with a 5.2% market share in 2011, according to Citigroup data.
BUSINESS
June 19, 2013 | By Chad Terhune, Los Angeles Times
Facing tougher price competition from a state-run marketplace, Aetna Inc. said it would exit California's individual health insurance market by year-end and leave nearly 50,000 customers searching for new coverage. Aetna, the nation's third-largest health insurer, will maintain a major presence in California with a focus on large and small employers. But the move reflects how the federal healthcare law and its rollout in different states is rapidly reshaping the health insurance landscape for millions of consumers.
BUSINESS
January 31, 2013 | By Chad Terhune
A Southern California surgery center charged teacher Lynne Nielsen $87,500 for a routine, 20-minute knee operation that normally costs about $3,000. Despite the huge markup, the Long Beach Unified School District and its insurer, Blue Shield of California, paid virtually all of the bill from Advanced Surgical Partners in Costa Mesa. Blue Shield mailed the $84,800 check to the high school Spanish teacher last month and told her to sign it over to the surgery center. Nielsen said she was outraged and refused to send the check.
BUSINESS
October 21, 2008 | From Times Wire Reports
Aetna Inc. added a link to the Gay and Lesbian Medical Assn. to the company's online directory of practitioners, DocFind, becoming the first U.S. health insurer to make such a move. The association's database lists more than 1,200 primary-care providers, specialists, therapists and dentists "who welcome lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender patients," according to a statement from the association, which is in San Francisco, and Aetna, based in Hartford, Conn.
BUSINESS
February 13, 2009 | Times Wire Reports
Aetna Inc., the third-largest U.S. health insurer, reported a 57% drop in profit because of investment losses and expenses for eliminating jobs. The Hartford, Conn., company maintained its earnings forecast for the year, saying it expected to add customers. Fourth-quarter net income fell to $194.7 million, or 42 cents a share, from $448.4 million, or 87 cents, a year earlier. Its shares rose 82 cents to $33.06.
BUSINESS
August 17, 2007 | From Reuters
New York Atty. Gen. Andrew Cuomo warned health insurers Aetna Inc. and Cigna Corp. on Thursday that planned programs that rank physicians on quality and cost would be likely to confuse or deceive consumers. In letters to the insurers, Cuomo took issue with the design of Aetna Aexcel and Cigna Care Network programs that would encourage members to use specialists whom the insurers have identified as delivering quality care while containing costs.
BUSINESS
May 30, 2003 | From Bloomberg News
A federal judge in Miami gave health insurer Aetna Inc. preliminary approval for a $170-million plan to settle claims by 700,000 doctors that the company unfairly cut reimbursements. The settlement approved by U.S. District Judge Federico Moreno gives doctors $100 million. Hartford, Conn.-based Aetna also agreed to pay $20 million to create a foundation to address health-care problems and $50 million in legal costs.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 11, 2013 | By Meg James
Louis J. Briskman plans to retire next month from his role as general counsel of CBS Corp. A mainstay of the broadcasting company, Briskman first joined CBS in 1975 when it was Westinghouse Electric Corp.  He has served as the top lawyer for four public corporations, including Aetna Inc., Group W (the broadcasting subsidiary of Westinghouse) and Westinghouse Electric.  After his stint at Aetna, Briskman rejoined CBS in September 2005, just four months before the CBS breakup with Viacom Inc.  At that point, CBS became a separate publicly traded company.
BUSINESS
June 18, 2013 | By Chad Terhune
Aetna Inc. said it would stop selling individual health insurance policies in California next month, and nearly 50,000 existing policyholders will have to find new coverage by January. The company's announcement Monday comes a month after it opted not to participate in California's new state-run insurance market for consumers, a key component of the new federal healthcare law. Aetna was a distant fourth in the state's individual health market with a 5.2% market share in 2011, according to Citigroup data.
BUSINESS
May 22, 2013 | By Chad Terhune, Los Angeles Times
Some prominent health insurers, including industry giant UnitedHealth Group Inc., are not participating in California's new state-run health insurance market, possibly limiting the number of choices for millions of consumers. UnitedHealth, the nation's largest private insurer, Aetna Inc. and Cigna Corp. are sitting out the first year of Covered California, the state's insurance exchange and a key testing ground nationally for a massive coverage expansion under the federal healthcare law. Meanwhile, the biggest insurers in the state - Kaiser Permanente, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of California - are all expected to participate in the state-run market for individual health coverage.
BUSINESS
April 11, 2013 | By Chad Terhune, Los Angeles Times
Blue Shield of California may be losing its longtime grip on one of the healthcare industry's most coveted insurance contracts. Officials at the California Public Employees' Retirement System are recommending breaking up Blue Shield's current statewide HMO contract and replacing it with as many as four health plans for more than 400,000 public workers and their families. The CalPERS board of administration will consider its staff's recommendation next week and decide among seven companies that submitted bids.
BUSINESS
January 31, 2013 | By Chad Terhune
A Southern California surgery center charged teacher Lynne Nielsen $87,500 for a routine, 20-minute knee operation that normally costs about $3,000. Despite the huge markup, the Long Beach Unified School District and its insurer, Blue Shield of California, paid virtually all of the bill from Advanced Surgical Partners in Costa Mesa. Blue Shield mailed the $84,800 check to the high school Spanish teacher last month and told her to sign it over to the surgery center. Nielsen said she was outraged and refused to send the check.
BUSINESS
January 26, 2012 | By Stuart Pfeifer, Los Angeles Times
The California Department of Insurance is investigating the business practices of Lap-Band surgery centers affiliated with the 1-800-GET-THIN advertising campaign, according to insurer Aetna Inc. The insurance giant said in a statement that it was cooperating with the department's law enforcement branch, which has the power to make arrests and pursue criminal charges, to "investigate alleged fraud against our members by the 1-800-GET-THIN … surgery...
BUSINESS
September 21, 2010 | By Duke Helfand, Los Angeles Times
Major health insurance companies in California and other states have decided to stop selling policies for children rather than comply with a new federal healthcare law that bars them from rejecting youngsters with preexisting medical conditions. Anthem Blue Cross, Aetna Inc. and others will halt new child-only policies in California, Illinois, Florida, Connecticut and elsewhere as early as Thursday when provisions of the nation's new healthcare law take effect, including a requirement that insurers cover children under age 19 regardless of their health histories.
BUSINESS
March 11, 2000 | From Associated Press
Aetna Inc., the nation's largest health insurer, apologized for selling policies in the 1850s that reimbursed slave owners for financial losses when those they enslaved died. "Aetna has long acknowledged that for several years shortly after its founding in 1853 that the company may have insured the lives of slaves," Aetna spokesman Fred Laberge said Thursday. "We express our deep regret over any participation at all in this deplorable practice."
BUSINESS
December 15, 2004 | From Bloomberg News
Employees at Boeing Co., the second-biggest U.S. defense contractor, have sued the company and health insurer Aetna Inc., saying they denied valid disability insurance claims. The lawsuit, filed in federal court in Seattle, says Aetna emphasized certain evidence in denying insurance claims for disabled employees and dismissed evidence that strengthened those claims. Boeing is named in the suit as a sponsor of Aetna's benefits plan.
BUSINESS
January 17, 2010 | David Lazarus
Los Angeles resident Stacey Owens found out after a recent doctor's visit that her health insurer, Aetna, had canceled her coverage, ostensibly because she'd missed a monthly payment. Never mind the heartlessness of leaving people uninsured because of something as potentially trivial as a misplaced bill. No, the problem in this case is that Owens, 25, never missed a payment -- and she has the bank records to prove it. Yet when she confronted Aetna with what clearly appeared to be a clerical error on the company's part, Owens said, the insurer dug in its heels and refused to reinstate her coverage.
BUSINESS
April 30, 2009 | TIMES WIRE REPORTS
Health insurer Aetna Inc. gained more than 1 million new members in the first quarter and reported a modest profit increase. But higher-than-expected medical costs, a problem many insurers wrestled with last year, cast a shadow over the performance. Hartford, Conn.-based Aetna said it adjusted its pricing to accommodate medical costs that rose 14% compared with the same quarter in 2008. Company officials tied the increases largely to factors found in the slumping economy.
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