[Story Developing] Tufts Health Plan and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care on Wednesday announced plans to combine their two organizations into a new company that will serve nearly 2.4 million members in Massachusetts, Maine, Connecticut, New Hampshire and Rhode Island.

The agreement has been unanimously approved by the boards of the two insurers, and will be be subject to multiple state and federal regulatory approvals. Tufts and Harvard Pilgrim will remain independent companies during the approval process.

Tufts Health Plan President and CEO Tom Crosswell will serve as CEO, and Michael Carson, currently the president and CEO of Harvard Pilgrim, will serve as president. Both organizations will be equally represented on a board of directors chaired by Joyce Murphy, who now chairs the Harvard Pilgrim board.

The companies said the new organization, which has not yet been named, "will become one of the region's largest nonprofit health services organizations, providing health coverage in all segments of the market regardless of a person's age, income, life circumstance or health status."

~ Katie Lannan/SHNS

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