Lee Simowitz

Subscribe to all posts by Lee Simowitz

Promoting Healthcare Competition – The FTC’s Recent Comments on State Legislative/Regulatory Efforts Impacting Competition from APRNs

In recent years, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) has frequently commented on state efforts to either expand, or restrict competition faced by doctors from advanced practice registered nurses (“APRNs”).  Generally speaking, there are four broad types of APRNs:  (1) certified registered nurse anesthetists (“CRNAs”); (2) certified nurse midwives (“CNMs”); (3) clinical nurse specialists (“CNSs”); and … Continue Reading

Is It Ever Okay to Exchange Competitively Sensitive, Nonpublic Information with a Competitor?

  Rarely, according to a recent Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) enforcement action against two nationally known hair restoration businesses—Bosley and Hair Club.  However, before you start chatting up your competitor for information, pick up the phone and call your lawyer for advice.   So, what got Bosley and Hair Club clipped?  For more than four … Continue Reading

Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect $200: Michigan Statute and Regulatory Order Banning MFN Provisions in Provider Contracts Ends Government Antitrust Lawsuit Against Michigan Blue

In the wake of the passage of a Michigan statute and regulatory order banning the use of most favored nation (“MFN”) clauses by insurers, health maintenance organizations, and nonprofit health care corporations in contracts with providers, the Department of Justice Antitrust Division (“DOJ”), the State of Michigan, and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan (“Michigan … Continue Reading

“Wide-Ranging Investigation” Leads FTC and Idaho AG to Join Ongoing Antitrust Lawsuit Challenging Acquisition of Idaho’s Largest Independent, Multi-Specialty Physician Group

After dodging an attempt by two of its competitors to stop the closing of its acquisition of Saltzer Medical Group (“Saltzer”)—a for-profit, physician-owned, multi-specialty group comprising approximately 44 physicians located in Nampa, Idaho—St. Luke’s Health System (“St. Luke’s”) must now also fend off the FTC’s and Idaho AG’s joint effort to unwind that transaction. On … Continue Reading

Oklahoma, OK and Not OK: The Right and Wrong Paths to Provider Joint Contracting

In the view of the FTC and the Justice Department, competing health care providers can contract jointly with third-party payers only if the providers integrate clinically (or financially) so that gains in efficiency and quality of care counterbalance any resulting price increases.  The FTC has filled in the blanks as to what constitutes adequate clinical … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Holds Antitrust Law Applies to State Hospital Authority Transaction

In one of the most closely watched healthcare antitrust cases in years, the Supreme Court  issued its decision in the FTC merger challenge to a Georgia hospital merger, Phoebe Putney Health System’s acquisition of Palmyra Medical Center.  In reversing the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals finding that Phoebe’s acquisition of Palmyra was immune from antitrust … Continue Reading

Burn Before Reading: Hot Documents and Antitrust Claims

Antitrust law and economics seem like dark arts to outsiders, an impression that antitrust lawyers are none too eager to dispel.  But everyone can appreciate a smoking gun document that seems to brand its author as a hardened violator of the antitrust laws.  Consider the memorandum written by a large waste-disposal company about a small … Continue Reading

Lonely Conspirators: Antitrust Liability When Nobody Joins Your Conspiracy

One is the loneliest number that you’ll ever do Two can be as bad as one It’s the loneliest number since the number one                    – Three Dog Night The worst antitrust offenses involve conspiracies involving multiple actors.  Hard-core offenses under Section 1 of the Sherman Act, such as price-fixing, market division, customer allocation, or … Continue Reading
LexBlog