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US: St. Francis cleared in rival’s US$300 million antitrust suit

 |  June 13, 2017

In an opinion written by Judge Posner, the Seventh Circuit on Friday gave its stamp of approval to [a] federal appeals court refused to revive a $300 million lawsuit accusing St. Francis Medical Center of violating antitrust laws by carving other Peoria, Ill., providers out of its exclusive contracts with commercial insurers.

The Court affirmed OSF Saint Francis Medical Center’s summary judgment win in a US$300 million antitrust suit brought by a smaller competitor alleging unlawful exclusive dealing and attempted monopolization. Methodist Health Svcs. v. OFS Healthcare System, Saint Francis Med. Case No. 16-3791 (7th Cir. June 9, 2017).

In his opinion affirming the legality of the exclusive contracts, Judge Posner observed that “competition for the contract is a form of competition that antitrust laws protect rather than proscribe.”

In a decision that is considered a notable precedent for hospital and provider networks—particularly those with substantial market shares—that wish to negotiate narrow and exclusive network agreements with mayors.

Full Content: Modern Health Care

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