CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- NationsBank Corp. said it will adopt a "managed health care" strategy to curb soaring employee benefit costs.

To be implemented in January, the plan centers on discounts negotiated with hospitals and physicians in large cities throughout NationsBank's nine-state territory.

The company said it selected Aetna Health Plans for its self-insured medical program and Prudential for its health maintenance organization.

The plan will affect 38,000 employees and save "millions of dollars a year," NationsBank said.

Without the new system, NationsBank projected that its 1993 employee health care bill would be nearly $140 million, of which the company would pay two-thirds.

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