Dec 4, 2017

US pharmacy firm CVS to buy health insurer Aetna for $69bn

US pharmacy chain CVS has agreed to buy health insurer Aetna in what could be the largest acquisition this year. The pharmacy chain operator's planned acquisition of Aetna, America's third largest health insurer, comes amid rising medical costs for many Americans and their employers, including for prescription medicines. CVS said the merger would put the firm in a better position to help customers as healthcare costs are growing at an "Unsustainable rate". Under the merger plan, CVS could turn parts of its 10,000 stores into community health centres staffed with pharmacists, nurses and nutritionists. There is no guarantee the acquisition will go ahead. Mergers involving health insurance companies have recently collapsed after being blocked by federal judges over antitrust concerns, including Aetna's plan to buy Humana for $34bn in 2015.

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