Two major Boston-area nonprofit insurers Harvard Pilgrim Health Care and Tufts Health Plan plan to merge to create a regional powerhouse that would serve nearly 2.4 million members in Massachusetts, Maine, Connecticut, New Hampshire and Rhode Island.

The combined organization will offer employer-sponsored plans, Medicare and Medicaid plans, individual marketplace plans and dual-eligible plans and position the companies to better compete with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, the state’s largest insurer.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The two health plans tout their ability to better serve members by improving affordability by increasing scale efficiencies, broadening the organization’s geographic reach and population health capabilities and boosting

Tufts Health Plan CEO Tom Croswell will serve as the CEO of the still-unnamed combination. Harvard Pilgrim Health Care CEO Michael Carson will serve as president where he will be charged with overseeing the organization’s subsidiaries.

“Our communities and consumers today face four major hurdles in health care:  affordability, access, quality of health and a fragmented health care experience across various stakeholders and health systems,” Croswell said in a statement.

“Through our shared vision, we believe we can tackle these issues and bring more value to the communities we serve.”

Joyce Murphy, who currently chairs the board of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care, will be the chair of the new company.

“Through the combination of two strong organizations with a commitment to non-profit health care in New England, we will be able to provide even greater value to consumers, as well as improve access to care throughout the region,” Murphy said in a statement.

The agreement has been unanimously approved by the board of both organizations, but will still need to garner authorization by local and federal regulators.

The company initially explored a merger back in 2011, but called it off because of what they cited was a lack of compatibility.

Photo: mediaphotos, Getty Images



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