Antitrust in Idaho

Here is a very interesting scenario.  The Federal Trade Commission and Idaho’s attorney general have challenged the acquisition of a physician group by a Boise, Idaho-based hospital system.  It seems the merger between St. Luke’s Health System and Saltzer Medical Group gave the combined entity an approximately 60% share of the primary-care physicians in Nampa, Idaho, the state’s second-largest city.  The lawyers for St. Luke’s stated, “We have no intention of using this relationship to increase prices for patients”.  Hmmmm.  Not sure if I believe them as many hospitals enable allow the physician to bill differently when they are under their umbrella.    Remember this article I blogged about called Facility Greed?   The WSJ article also went on to say that:

State and federal antitrust regulators have been signaling growing scrutiny of the accelerating pace of mergers among doctors and hospitals around the country. The FTC and attorneys general in several states have launched investigations and filed suits over deals that they say could limit competition and boost costs.

Trust me, you are going to see a lot more antitrust lawsuits coming very soon.

Douglas Farrago MD

Douglas Farrago MD is a full-time practicing family doc in Forest, Va. He started Forest Direct Primary Care where he takes no insurance and bills patients a monthly fee. He is board certified in the specialty of Family Practice. He is the inventor of a product called the Knee Saver which is currently in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Knee Saver and its knock-offs are worn by many major league baseball catchers. He is also the inventor of the CryoHelmet used by athletes for head injuries as well as migraine sufferers. Dr. Farrago is the author of four books, two of which are the top two most popular DPC books. From 2001 – 2011, Dr. Farrago was the editor and creator of the Placebo Journal which ran for 10 full years. Described as the Mad Magazine for doctors, he and the Placebo Journal were featured in the Washington Post, US News and World Report, the AP, and the NY Times. Dr. Farrago is also the editor of the blog Authentic Medicine which was born out of concern about where the direction of healthcare is heading and the belief that the wrong people are in charge. This blog has been going daily for more than 15 years Article about Dr. Farrago in Doximity Email Dr. Farrago – [email protected] 

  1 comment for “Antitrust in Idaho

  1. wil watkins md
    March 20, 2013 at 9:39 am

    i know that hospital owned practices often charge 70 to 100 dollar “facility fees” in addition to doctor’s bill.

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