NU Online News Service, Dec. 2, 2004, 6:50 p.m. EST

PacifiCare Health Systems Inc., Cypress, Calif., has moved closer to acquiring a Midwestern health insurer.[@@]

Shareholders of American Medical Security Group Inc., Milwaukee, have approved American Medical managers’ decision to sell the company to PacifiCare, American Medical says.

Holders of about 61% of the outstanding shares of common stock cast their votes in favor of the deal.

American Medical needs the support of the holders of a majority of its common shares to proceed with the PacifiCare deal, which already has the approval of Wisconsin insurance regulators.

American Medical sells health insurance and related products to individuals and small groups.