Cigna, a health insurance company, has been in the news lately for several reasons. These include its contract with Chesapeake Regional Medical Center, which will be out of network for Cigna patients starting June 1, concerns about its internal claims review process, the appointment of Brent Hunter as general manager for its group employer business in mid-America, and the agreement it reached with Baton Rouge General. Cigna CEO David Cordani also told investors that employers are hesitant to cover the cost of GLP-1 drugs for their employees. In addition, Cigna beat investor expectations and reported a 10% growth in membership year over year. Finally, Cigna appointed Philip Ozuah, MD, Ph.D., to its board of directors.
The Cigna Group, a health insurance company headquartered in Bloomfield, Connecticut, has been in the news lately for several reasons. Here are eight updates about the company since April 27, 2023:
- Cigna Healthcare and Chesapeake Regional Medical Center (CRMC) in Virginia will be out of network for those with employer-sponsored health coverage starting June 1. This means that patients who are covered by Cigna will have to pay more for care if they receive it at CRMC.
- State insurance commissioners and federal lawmakers are raising concerns about Cigna’s internal claims review process. ProPublica reported in March that the company denies large batches of claims without reviewing them first. This could be a major problem for patients who are denied coverage for necessary care.
- Cigna named Brent Hunter as general manager for its group employer business in mid-America. Hunter is a seasoned healthcare executive with over 20 years of experience. He will be responsible for leading Cigna’s group employer business in the Midwest and South.
- Baton Rouge General, a hospital system in Louisiana, reached an agreement on a new contract with Cigna ahead of a looming deadline. The system had been out of network with Cigna since January, which meant that patients who were covered by Cigna had to pay more for care if they received it at Baton Rouge General.
- Cigna CEO David Cordani told investors that employers are hesitant to cover the cost of GLP-1 drugs for their employees. GLP-1 drugs are a new type of diabetes medication that can be very expensive. Cordani said that employers are concerned about the cost of these drugs and are reluctant to add them to their health plans.
- Cigna beat investor expectations and reported a 10% growth in membership year over year. In the first quarter, net income was $1.3 billion, up 6% year over year. This growth is due in part to the company’s acquisition of Express Scripts in 2018.
- Cigna appointed Philip Ozuah, MD, Ph.D., to its board of directors. Ozuah is the president and CEO of Montefiore Medicine, a healthcare system based in New York City. He is a board-certified neurosurgeon and has over 25 years of experience in healthcare leadership.
- The American Medical Association (AMA) and more than 100 physicians and healthcare organizations asked Cigna to reconsider a policy they say will add administrative costs and burdens and potentially negatively affect patients. The policy in question requires doctors to submit prior authorization requests for certain medications. The AMA and other groups argue that this policy will make it more difficult for patients to get the care they need.
These are just a few of the recent updates about Cigna. The company is a major player in the healthcare industry, and its actions have a significant impact on patients, employers, and healthcare providers.