FTC Likely To Prevail In Demands That Health Systems Report Information On Certificates Of Public Advantage
Section 6(b) of the Federal Trade Commission Act, which the FTC cited in its information demands, gives the agency broad investigative authority to demand information from companies for use in research, legal experts point out. Other health system and hospital news comes out of Florida, Illinois, New York, Oregon and Wisconsin.
Health Systems Unlikely To Skirt FTC's COPA Information Demands
The health systems on the receiving end of the Federal Trade Commission's demands for information on certificates of public advantage this week aren't going to have much luck if they attempt to contest the orders, legal experts say. The federal regulatory agency is requesting a considerable amount of information from two health systems and five health insurers to inform its study into COPAs' effects on price, quality, access and healthcare innovation. One of those systems, Ballad Health, seemed to indicate it might challenge the demand, citing the state immunity afforded under its COPA, a maneuver that allows states to approve mergers that may otherwise have been blocked in federal antitrust action. (Bannow, 10/24)
Jackson Health System Pays $2.1 Million HIPAA Fine
A Florida health system has paid $2.1 million to HHS' Office for Civil Rights in one of the biggest HIPAA fines this year. The OCR imposed the fine on Jackson Health System, an academic health system based in Miami, after an investigation revealed three separate HIPAA violations since 2013. Jackson Health System waived its right to a hearing and did not contest the OCR's findings. It has already paid the civil money penalty in full, according to the OCR. (Cohen, 10/24)
Board Member, Executive Leave Health Care Service Corp.
The shake-up at the nation's sixth-largest health insurer has hit the Chicago-based company's board of directors. M. Ray Perryman stepped down from the Health Care Service Corp. board less than three months after CEO Paula Steiner's departure, which reportedly resulted from a disagreement with directors over growth strategy. (Goldberg, 10/24)
The Wall Street Journal:
Lenox Hill Hospital’s Development Plan Opposed By Manhattan Neighbors
A $2 billion hospital redevelopment plan by Lenox Hill Hospital was dealt a blow Wednesday night as an Upper East Side neighborhood advisory body voted overwhelmingly against a proposed rezoning of the site. The development plan by the hospital, part of Northwell Health, would dramatically upgrade the hospital but also create two large towers in a tony residential area. The site occupies a city block stretching from Park to Lexington avenues, and from 76th to 77th streets. (West, 10/24)
Trillium Files Antitrust Suit Against OHSU, Providence, Legacy Claiming It Is Being Blocked From Portland Market
Trillium Community Health Plan today filed a federal antitrust suit against the three largest hospital systems in Portland claiming they have colluded to “boycott” Trillium making it difficult to impossible for the insurance company to do business here. Trillium filed the suit in U.S. District Court against Legacy Health, Providence Health and Services Oregon and OHSU Health System. Without the “Big Three,” as Trillium calls them, it won’t be able to crack the metro-area Medicaid market. (Manning, 10/24)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
Ambulance Diversion: Hospital Closure Policies More Likely Affect Sicker, Poorer Patients
Other studies have connected ambulance diversion with a higher mortality rate for African American patients than whites; revealed delayed cardiac care for all patients; and found that when safety-net hospitals turn away ambulances, nearby for-profit ones close as a pre-emptive measure that exacerbates the delay in care. Such research is key, experts say, to show the disparities created when hospitals close to ambulances. (Diedrich and Crowe, 10/25)