AP News

Amerigroup to sell Virginia health plan to Inova

VIRGINIA BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Amerigroup Corp. said Friday it will sell its Virginia operations to health care provider Inova as it deals with antitrust questions about WellPoint Inc.'s proposed $4.5 billion acquisition of Amerigroup.

Amerigroup said that the U.S. Justice Department had asked for more information about Amerigroup's operations in Virginia. WellPoint also does business in Virginia.

The sale to Inova, a not-for-profit company that operates five hospitals in the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C., would end Amerigroup's managed-care business in the state.

The sale is conditioned on closing the WellPoint-Amerigroup deal. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Amerigroup said the sale to Inova would not change terms of the deal with WellPoint, which is expected to close in the fourth quarter if the companies get regulatory approval.

Amerigroup, based in Virginia Beach, has more than 2.7 million members in 13 states. The Virginia subsidiary has 55,000 members, including those in government assistance programs such as the Children's Health Insurance Program.

WellPoint , the nation's second-largest health insurer, said in July that it would pay $92 per share for Amerigroup and grab a bigger piece of the growing market of patients covered by Medicaid, the federal-state health program for low-income people.

Amerigroup shares rose 18 cents to close at $91.43, after hitting a 52-week high of $91.50 during the session. WellPoint shares slipped 6 cents to close at $58.01.

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