Today’s news that HP and Tufts will merge seems to be getting a so so response. However it is notable in a few ways. It belies the concept of “competition” since it is now clear that it is market share not a better product that is paramount. BCSBS with the highest market share also has the highest premiums. It also has negotiated the highest rates based on brand rather than equivalent service. This merger will only exacerbate this problem.
Remember HP is the template of Charlie Baker’s thinking and sorry to say, even though he is a Democrat, James Roosevelt has also bought into the template that it is doctors and patients that are responsible for higher costs rather than the insurers themselves.
We will have to see how this plays out. Should the public buy that this fusion is to their benefit or are we the victim of another shell game?