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man offering cash The hospitals made individual statements claiming that they took the money to benefit their employees, and that the settlement avoids an expensive lawsuit. (Photo: iStock)

Five hospitals in Montana are settling a lawsuit that has accused them of inflating health coverage prices on employee health plans for a health insurer that offered them $26 million, to be split five ways.

According to the Bozeman Daily Chronicle, Bozeman Health Deaconess Hospital, Billings Clinic, St. Peter’s Health in Helena, Community Medical Center in Missoula and Northern Montana Hospital in Havre all say they did nothing wrong and have agreed to pay $6.9 million to employees in resolution of the case. The settlement won preliminary approval from a U.S. District Court judge in Great Falls on October 17.

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Marlene Satter

Marlene Y. Satter has worked in and written about the financial industry for decades.

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