Consumer Protection Antitrust & Trade Regulation Health

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Send Lawyers, Guns and Money:* Providers Lining Up Against Anthem/Cigna and Aetna/Humana Mergers

In the wake of Anthem’s proposed acquisition of Cigna and Aetna’s proposed acquisition of Humana, providers are lining up to be heard. Take the American Medical Association (AMA), for example, which is urging federal and...more

Health Insurers Announce Merger Plans; Congress Announces Intention to Review

In the last few months, several of the largest commercial health insurers in the nation have announced their intentions to merge. First, Aetna (currently the nation’s third largest health insurer by revenue) announced its...more

Federal Trade Commission Guidance Addresses Stand-alone Claims of Unfair Competition Under Section 5 of the FTC Act

Section 5 of the FTC Act, in effect since 1914, authorizes the FTC to pursue claims of unfair competition beyond the reach of both the Sherman and Clayton Acts. 15 U.S.C. § 45(a)(1). Until now however, the FTC has been...more

FTC Staff Comment Encourages FDA to Reevaluate its Current Approach to Regulating Homeopathic Products

On Friday, staff of the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, Office of Policy Planning, and Bureau of Economics submitted a written comment to FDA recommending that FDA reconsider its current regulatory...more

FTC Urges FDA to Reconsider Homeopathic Regulatory Framework

In a comment filed last Friday, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) responded to its sister-agency’s request for comments by urging the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to reconsider how homeopathic drugs are regulated. As...more

FTC Resolves Case Against “Melanoma Detective” App Marketer

The FTC announced late last week that it resolved its case against the final defendant, Avrom Lasarow, in the “Melanoma Detective” app matters. The FTC alleged that claims that the apps could detect and diagnose melanoma in...more

Antitrust Issues Facing Physicians in Medicaid and Professional Licensing

Physicians who were practicing in the 1990s were involved in numerous attempts to organize themselves in order to be able to participate in and even financially survive the onslaught of managed care delivery systems. The new...more

Ruling on Economic Favoritism Puts ‘NC Dental’ Back in Spotlight

In a recent opinion, a divided panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled that an economic regulation passed by a state agency solely to protect one group from competition would not violate the...more

Privacy Tuesday – August 2015: Three Bytes for End of Summer

It’s Privacy Tuesday again – and summer is winding down. Here are three bytes of privacy/security information to start your week...more

CON laws, COPAs and the FTC: 7 Antitrust Points For The Healthcare Sector

The Federal Trade Commission is on a roll in its attack on what it considers anti-competitive effects in the healthcare industry. And that roll has consistently involved challenging activity that once appeared to be protected...more

Regulators Likely To Heavily Scrutinize Proposed Humana-Aetna Merger

At the beginning of the month, insurance companies Aetna Inc. and Humana Inc. announced they would be pursuing a merger, with the former company acquiring the latter. Aetna, sources say, will be purchasing Humana for roughly...more

Regulators Sue Four Michigan Hospitals for Agreeing to Restrict Marketing Activities

As most people know, agreements between competitors to fix prices or allocate or divide markets are clear violations of the antitrust laws and can result in serious penalties. In industries as diverse as foreign exchange...more

FTC Comment: Minnesota Law Requiring Public Disclosure of Health Care Contract Data Increases Risk of Anticompetitive Behavior

On June 29, 2015, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) responded to a request for comment from two Minnesota state legislators concerning recently enacted amendments to the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act (MGDPA). Under...more

Antitrust: “One is the loneliest number that you’ll ever do”*

Allegiance Health (Allegiance) is the lone holdout facing antitrust charges brought by the DOJ and Michigan’s Attorney General (AG). Yet despite settlements by Hillsdale Community Health (Hillsdale), Community Health of...more

FAS Russia official recommendations on the commercial policies of manufacturers of pharmaceuticals and medical devices holding a...

On June 30, 2015 on its official site FAS Russia published recommendations for entities holding a dominant position on pharmaceuticals markets and medical devices markets (hereinafter together “pharmaceutical companies”) to...more

“Ain’t Wastin’ Time No More”* — Doctors, Vets, and Lawyers in the Antitrust Crosshairs

Supreme Court Decision in North Carolina State Board of Dental Examiners v. Federal Trade Commission Prompts Legal Challenges to State Professional Boards - Earlier this month a Texas federal district court judge granted a...more

Health Care and Legal Services Providers Challenge State Regulatory Boards on Heels of SCOTUS State Action Antitrust Immunity...

On February 25, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court narrowed the scope of antitrust immunity for state regulatory boards whose members are active market participants in the occupation regulated by the boards. In North Carolina State...more

New York Attorney General Pursues Dental Management Company for Corporate Practice Violation

Attorney General (AG) Eric Schneiderman announced a settlement With Aspen Dental Management (ADM). The Settlement Agreement requires ADM to pay $450,000 in Civil Penalties, after the AG found that the company was engaged in...more

Is the Competition Bureau Targeting You? New IP Enforcement Guidelines

On June 9, 2015, the Canadian Competition Bureau released updated draft Intellectual Property Enforcement Guidelines (IPEGs) for public comment. The comment period is open until August 10, 2015. It is the third publication of...more

Federal Court Enjoins Texas Medical Board from Enforcing More Stringent Telemedicine Rules

On April 10, 2015, the Texas Medical Board (the “Board”) voted to adopt stricter regulations governing the practice of telemedicine, which were scheduled to go into effect June 3, 2015 (the “Revised Regulations”). The Board...more

Teladoc successful in thwarting new Texas telemedicine rules

We previously reported on the new telemedicine regulations adopted by the Texas Medical Board (Board), which requires that patients be seen face-to-face or in person to establish a physician-patient relationship in order to...more

All Eyes on Homeopathics: FTC Workshop Signals Targeted Regulatory Scrutiny of Homeopathic Products

On Tuesday, the Federal Trade Commission “FTC” announced it will be hosting a workshop in September to evaluate advertising for over-the-counter homeopathic products. Homeopathy is an alternative medicine practice dating back...more

REMS and Antitrust: Latest Litigation Lessons

Brand name pharmaceutical companies have long stood in the way of generic pharmaceuticals entering the market. To keep generics at bay, brands have used a variety tactics, including ultimately unlawful ones like fraudulently...more

Second Circuit Becomes First Court of Appeals to Address Pharmaceutical “Product Hopping” Under Antitrust Laws in Decision Barring...

Few courts have addressed antitrust challenges to pharmaceutical “product hopping,” i.e., the practice of shifting customers from a drug nearing the end of its patent protection to a modified version that is covered by newer...more

Product Hopping and Antitrust: Mylan Court Dismisses Claims on Summary Judgment, Citing Need to Avoid Chilling Pharmaceutical...

A recent summary judgment opinion from the Eastern District of Pennsylvania breaks new ground in the developing antitrust law on “product hopping” claims. “Product hopping” refers to the practice of changing the form or...more

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