A report released by the American Medical Association shows, as also has been demonstrated in the past, that there is a lack of competition in health insurance in four out of five markets. The report “is intended to help regulators, lawmakers, researchers and policymakers identify markets where mergers among health insurers may cause competitive harm to patients, physicians and employers.” Among their findings:
- A significant absence of health insurer competition exists in 83 percent of metropolitan markets studied by the AMA. These markets rated “highly concentrated,” based on the newly revised Horizontal Merger Guidelines issued last year by the U.S. Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission*.
- In about half of metropolitan markets, at least one health insurer had a commercial market share of 50 percent or more.
- In 24 of the 48 states reported in the new AMA study, the two largest health insurers had a combined commercial market share of 70 percent or more.
- The 10 states with the least competitive commercial health insurance markets, are: 1. Alabama, 2. Alaska, 3. Delaware, 4. Michigan, 5. Hawaii, 6. District of Columbia, 7. Nebraska, 8. North Carolina, 9. Indiana and 10. Maine.