Former Aetna CEO cites ‘tension’ in CVS board changes

The former CEO of health insurer Aetna, which was acquired by CVS Health for $69 billion at the end of 2018, says he is being pushed off the board of the combined company.

CVS Health recently announced it would drop three board members after its 2020 Annual Meeting, including Former Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini and two other directors. While CVS stated the change from 16 board members to 13 is more aligned with corporate governance best practices, Bertolini told The Wall Street Journal he was willing to serve on the board to support the integration between Aetna and CVS. According to CVS’ statement, the companies are integrated. But to Bertolini, the “integration is far from over,” he told the WSJ.

He also said there is “a natural tension” between the former CEO and the CEO of CVS Health, Larry Merlo, as there would be with any transaction.

The conflicting statements between CVS Health and Bertolini hint that at other potential management questions.

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