A Department of Justice lawsuit seeking to block Aetna’s proposed acquisition of Humana will go to trial Dec. 5, according to news reports on a hearing before U.S. District Judge John Bates in Washington, D.C., who was assigned to the case. According to the reports, the judge said he expects a ruling around mid-January, which would be beyond the insurers’ year-end deadline to complete the deal. DOJ filed the lawsuit with 11 states and the District of Columbia last month, when it also took action to block Anthem’s proposed acquisition of Cigna. The deals, if allowed to proceed, would create three major national insurers where there are now five. AHA has vigorously urged DOJ to challenge both deals on the grounds that they would reduce competition and harm consumers and hospitals.