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What We're Reading: DOJ Skeptical About Anthem-Cigna Merger


What we're reading, June 30, 2016: concerns over Anthem-Cigna deal may mean the government moves to block the merger; why the price of childhood vaccines is actually too low; and saturated fats are not as bad as once thought.

The Department of Justice (DOJ) is said to be concerned that Anthem’s takeover of Cigna will reduce competition. Both companies met with a top official in the department, but the DOJ is skeptical that the 2 companies can fix the issues of concern, reported Bloomberg. The sources were people familiar with the matter who stayed anonymous because of the confidentiality of the review. The report increases the likelihood that the government will move to block the deal.

The price of vaccines for children may actually be too low. According to The New York Times’ blog The Upshot, the low cost of $2000 for all childhood vaccines is contributing to shortages. Even with vaccine prices rising as new ones come to market and the number of recommended doses increases, vaccines are still inexpensive considering the value they bring, wrote Austin Frakt, PhD.

Saturated fats may not be as bad for heart health as once thought. STAT reported that scientists are no longer looking at broad categories like saturated fat and are instead looking at the healthiness of specific foods. A study found that eating butter did not significantly change incidence of cardiovascular disease, coronary heart disease, or stroke. The study found pros and cons of eating 1 tablespoon of butter a day: doing so increased mortality risk by 1% but also lowered risk of diabetes by 4%.

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