New York State
Insurance Department


ISSUED: 9/05/2001

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

UNIVERA-EXCELLUS MERGER GRANTED INSURANCE DEPARTMENT REGULATORY APPROVAL

             Superintendent of Insurance Gregory V. Serio today announced the Insurance Department’s regulatory approval of the merger of the Univera companies into the Excellus Health Plan. The transaction has now been approved by the Insurance Department, Health Department and Public Health Council, and will need to seek final approval from the courts.

             "The Department reviewed all facets of the merger and put into place many additional safeguards to ensure that Excellus and Univera policyholders and New York’s health insurance consumers remain protected," said Serio.

             A critical piece of the transaction is the creation of a charitable foundation into which certain assets of the Univera companies were contributed. Those initial contributions by Univera will be used to fund charitable purposes to improve the health status of the citizens in the Univera service areas.

             "It was essential to the Department that those funds attributable to Univera were earmarked to service the citizens in the Buffalo and Syracuse areas and I think we have done that," added Serio.

             The Excellus Health Plan and its affiliates will begin making contributions to the foundation in the third year after the effective date of the merger. The Univera companies consist of Health Care Plan, Univera Central NY, and Univera Southern Tier. Excellus Health Plan is a non-profit Article 43 health service corporation licensed under the Insurance Law of the State of New York.


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