The suits by the
The Cigna suit was filed Thursday in federal court in
The allegations against both insurers are essentially the same: They are accused of charging co-pays that, in the cases of dozens of widely prescribed drugs, are double or more than cost of the entire prescription. In one case, the suit claims, a Cigna health customer paid a co-pay that was more than 1,000 percent greater than the cost of the prescription.
The suit contends that customers are not making the "co-payments" required by their insurance coverage, but rather are making "you-payments."
"We have received complaints from all over the country that customers are overpaying for prescription drugs," said
Cigna said it does not comment on litigation.
Prices to be paid for prescription drugs typically are negotiated between health insurers and pharmacies. Businesses called prescription benefit managers act as middlemen in the transactions that actually deliver drugs to customers.
Although the benefit managers are not named defendants in the suits, they are described as complicit in a system that forces pharmacists to charge customers unjustifiably high co-pays. Under the terms of their agreements with the benefit managers, the suit contends pharmacists are obligated to return excessive costs to the insurance companies.
The suit refers to what it claims was a 2014 transaction in which a Cigna customer paid a
Cigna had negotiated a price of
The suit claims that the insurers are engaged in a continuing conspiracy to defraud their customers in violation of both the federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 and the federal Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.
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