Health care competition from neighboring states is behind the move to merge for two medical centers in Wyoming.

The Wyoming Medical Center in Casper and Cheyenne Regional Medical Center announced their proposal earlier this week. Lowering costs and creating an environment that retains specialty care is considered crucial.

Senator Charlie Scott, who is also chair of the Wyoming Legislatures Senate Health Subcommittee, says unfair Medicare disbursement formulas and a lack of tort reform in the state are two elements that make it hard for Wyoming to compete.

"If you go from here to Poudre Valley your probably going to save yourself some money. Because of the cost disadvantage in Wyoming they're being beaten out by competitors in surrounding states"

Scott says moving patients across state lines could lead to loss of life.

The merger, he says, needs to be one of equals and show real cost savings.