Connecticut is a state to watch on healthcare cost and competition. Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen has been particularly active in the past years in promoting fairness and transparency in healthcare pricing, as well as in promoting greater enforcement of provider consolidation. The Connecticut Antitrust Act contains provisions under which (often in addition to federal statutes) the state or private persons may bring claims. In addition, Connecticut has a robust process for requiring and evaluating requests for certificates of need. The state’s Certificate of Need Program is detailed on the department of health’s website.
In 2018, Connecticut was active in introducing legislation aimed at controlling pharmaceutical costs. The legislature passed HB 5384, which requires pharmaceutical companies to disclose and explain prescription drug price hikes. Drug makers must justify any pharmaceutical price that jumps 20 percent or more during a calendar year, insurers must report large drug cost increases when filing rate requests, and PBMs must report how much they collect in rebates and how much they keep. Additionally, the state passed SB 197, which adds biological products to existing laws regarding substitution of generic drugs.
2020 Legislative Session: 2/52020 - 5/6/2020 (2020 term). *Current session bill updates are ongoing. Check back weekly for updates.
STATE BUDGETConnecticut enacts budgets on a two-year cycle, beginning July 1 of each odd-numbered year and valid through June 30 of the next odd-numbered year. The governor submits a proposed budget in February and the legislature adopts a budget in May or June.
REGULATION & ENFORCEMENT
- Connecticut was one of 16 states to file an amicus brief supporting the FTC’s winning position in the Ninth Circuit appeal of St. Luke’s Health Care Sys. v. FTC, No. 14-35173 (March 7, 2014), decided February 10, 2015. The States’ brief stated that the acceleration of health care costs due to the growth of large health care provider systems had become a matter of grave concern for the states.
- In June 2012, AG Jepsen, in coordination with the FTC, declined to challenge the proposed merger of Yale-New Haven Hospital and The Hospital of Saint Raphael. The enforcement entities apparently based their decision, in part, on St. Raphael’s precarious financial condition at the time of the deal.
- In 2014, Connecticut AG George Jepsen was active in attempting to control rising healthcare costs by monitoring provider consolidation and increasing price transparency. In April, the Connecticut AGO issued a report on these issues. Most recently, in December 2014, the AG approved a provider joint venture between Waterbury Hospital and Vanguard (a subsidiary of Tenet), subjecting the proposed deal to several conditions.
- On Feb. 25, 2016, Connecticut’s governor issued an executive order demanding a review of the state’s certificate of needs process, and suspending the approval of hospital mergers until January 2017.
- In the proposed Anthem-Cigna merger, Connecticut’s Department of Insurance took a major role in the merger review, alongside the AG’s office there. Ins Commissioner Katherine Wade’s former ties to Cigna and her husband’s position in-house counsel position there have raised questions of bias.