A battle over the effects of health care industryconsolidation has broken out inWashington, the likes of which hasn’t been seen in years.

Just when it seemed that Americans had become blasé aboutanti-trust matters, the Athem-Cigna and Aetna-Humana deals havebrought the anti-trust soup back to a boil.

Modern Healthcare was on hand last week to report on thehistrionics the mergers have touched off. During a hearing beforethe House Judiciary Committee’s Antitrust Subcommittee, members ofopposing political parties were shouting at each other across theaisle and health care lobbying groups squared off fromopposite sides of the debate.

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Dan Cook

Dan Cook is a journalist and communications consultant based in Portland, OR. During his journalism career he has been a reporter and editor for a variety of media companies, including American Lawyer Media, BusinessWeek, Newhouse Newspapers, Knight-Ridder, Time Inc., and Reuters. He specializes in health care and insurance related coverage for BenefitsPRO.