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US: FTC official demies clash between Affordable Care Act, antitrust law

 |  February 19, 2014

A recently-appointed Federal Trade Commission official has reportedly responded to criticism that the Affordable Care Act is in conflict with federal antitrust law, writing a letter to the New York Times earlier this week to defend the interaction of the legislative areas.

FTC Bureau of Economics Martin Gaynor wrote the letter to declare that the FTC does “not stand in the way of providers’ finding new ways of coordinating and improving care” and that “there are many ways for providers to effectively coordinate care that do not require merger or acquisition or cause for competitive concerns.”

Reports say the editorial was in response to an article in the Times earlier this month that covered a federal judge’s decision to back the FTC in ordering the reversal of a merger between Idaho’s largest healthcare provider and its largest physician practice. Experts concluded that the Affordable Care Act and healthcare law reform lead to the deal, which involved St. Luke’s Health System and Saltzer Meical group.

Following the judge’s ruling, St. Lukes said that the FTC’s law suit against the merger conflicted with the ACA’s efforts to increase coordination within the industry.

Full Content: Modern Healthcare

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