The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit provides significant judicial guidance for future health care mergers, casting serious doubt on the viability of a “post-merger efficiencies defense” to a prima facie case of a Section 7 violation (St. Luke’s Health System / Saltzer Medical Group)

In Highly-Anticipated Decision, Ninth Circuit Affirms That Hospital-Physician Group Merger in St. Luke’s Violated Section 7 And Casts Serious Doubt on Viability of Efficiencies Defense* On February 10, 2015, the Ninth Circuit issued its highly-anticipated decision at the intersection of health care and antitrust, affirming the lower court’s finding that a hospital-physician group merger completed nearly three years ago violated Section 7 of the Clayton Act. St. Alphonsus Med. Ctr. – Nampa Inc. v. St. Luke’s Health Sys., Ltd., No. 14-35173 (9th Cir. Feb. 10, 2015) (“St. Luke’s”). The significance of St. Luke’s cannot be overstated. It is the first challenge of a hospital-physician group merger by the Federal Trade Commission that proceeded to trial. And, the Ninth Circuit’s opinion includes

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Authors

  • Sheppard Mullin (San Francisco)
  • Sheppard Mullin (Century City)

Quotation

Helen Cho Eckert, David R. Garcia, The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit provides significant judicial guidance for future health care mergers, casting serious doubt on the viability of a “post-merger efficiencies defense” to a prima facie case of a Section 7 violation (St. Luke’s Health System / Saltzer Medical Group), 10 February 2015, e-Competitions February 2015, Art. N° 71859

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