Bass, Berry & Sims attorney Dale Grimes authored an article for Becker's Hospital Review outlining the antitrust concerns that can accompany healthcare consolidations. As Dale points out in the article, "[w]hether by merger or acquisition, joint venture, clinical integration, or some other form of alignment, consolidating or affiliating with other provider organizations carries the risk of an antitrust investigation and challenge by federal or state enforcers, and often both." According to research cited in the article, nearly "half of the FTC's enforcement actions were in the healthcare sector from 2011 to 2015, with 24% in 'Health Care–General,' and 26% in 'Health Care–Pharmaceuticals & Medical Devices.'"
Dale also discusses several recent antitrust cases and outlines some lessons learned from these , such as:
- The FTC as well as state enforcers are indeed watching.
- The number of physicians joining together in a group merger is not a determining factor.
- Planning a merger for the sole purpose of increasing bargaining power is unwise and dangerous.
- Bad documents can sink a merger.
The full article, "Under the Microscope, Antitrust Enforcers Focus on Healthcare Consolidations," was published by Becker's Hospital Review on June 20, 2016, and is available online.