CIGNA Corp. has completed a previously announced acquisition of Great-West Healthcare.

CIGNA, Philadelphia, paid $1.5 billion in cash for the Greenwood Village, Colo., business, which is part of Great-West Life & Annuity Insurance Company.

Great-West Life & Annuity is a unit of Great-West Lifeco Inc., Winnipeg, Manitoba., which in turn, is a unit of Power Corp. of Canada, Montreal.

In addition to paying $1.5 billion in cash for the health business, CIGNA subsidiaries will be retaining $400 million in capital to support the acquired business, CIGNA says.

The Great-West health business provides or administers health coverage for 1.4 million employer medical plan members and 500,000 additional covered lives, CIGNA says.

Great-West HealthCare has been particularly active in administering health coverage for small self-insured health plans.

The deal also includes the health business employees and information systems, CIGNA says.

The deal does not include the Great-West Life & Annuity retirement services and individual markets businesses