May 23, 2024


Imagination at work

FTC begins investigation of physician group mergers and orders insurers to share data

The Federal Trade Commission is analyzing statements facts from some of the nation’s major overall health insurers’ to see how medical doctor group acquisitions impact competition.

The commission sent orders to Aetna, Anthem, Florida Blue, Cigna, Wellness Treatment Service Company and United Healthcare.

It can be looking for affected individual-degree statements facts for inpatient, outpatient and medical doctor products and services throughout 15 states from 2015 by way of 2020. The facts will be employed in a study to examine how medical doctor observe mergers and medical center acquisitions of medical doctor methods have an affect on the marketplace.


This study is a component of the FTC’s much larger initiative to revamp its merger retrospective application. The application exists as a way for the commission to gauge how a specific merger impacted the equilibrium of its market.

The FTC makes use of the retrospective results to choose if it was also lenient or severe in allowing or complicated a merger. The goal is that the final results will help it be better geared up to predict the repercussions of a merger right before it goes by way of.

For this study specifically, the final results must help the FTC and other pertinent stakeholders better comprehend how medical doctor observe mergers and health care facility mergers have an affect on competition, the commission explained in its announcement.

THE More substantial Craze

Healthcare M&A activity took a dip in 2020, owing in massive component to the COVID-19 pandemic. Still, the seventy nine transactions recorded in Kaufman Hall’s 2020 M&A in Evaluation report ended up described as “remarkable” for coming shut to the ninety two promotions from the 12 months right before.

Analysts and overall health leaders alike count on activity to ramp up shifting forward. They predict that as overall health techniques evaluate their organization approaches write-up-pandemic, people in robust positions will acquire gain of other systems’ divestitures to increase their abilities and expand into new markets.

In aid of that prediction, forty four% of health care CFOs say the pandemic will generate an maximize in partnerships throughout the health care ecosystem, according to the 2021 BDO Healthcare CFO Outlook Survey. Even further, 31% explained they ended up searching to acquire medical doctor methods in 2021.

While the FTC signed off on a amount of mergers very last 12 months, it tried to block the proposed merger of Jefferson Wellness and Albert Einstein Healthcare Network. The commission alleged that consolidation would decrease competition in the space for the reason that the two have a background of competing against each other to boost quality and company.

Its try was thwarted, nevertheless, by a federal choose of the U.S. District Court docket for the Japanese District of Pennsylvania for the reason that it failed to reveal that there was a credible menace of harm to competition.


“The study final results must help the FTC’s enforcement mission by giving considerably a lot more specific data than is at this time available about how medical doctor observe mergers and health care facility mergers have an affect on competition,” The FTC explained in the announcement. “The study final results will also help policymakers by giving vital evidence documenting how mergers and acquisitions of medical doctor groups and health care facilities have an affect on the proper working of health care markets.”

Twitter: @HackettMallory
E mail the writer: [email protected]