Pressured by FTC, Carilion Clinic agrees to sell outpatient centers

Moving to quickly end a dispute with the Federal Trade Commission, which objected to its acquisition of two outpatient centers, Roanoke, VA-based Carilion Clinic has reached a tentative settlement with the agency by agreeing to get rid of the centers quickly.

The FTC had issued an administrative complaint in late July challenging the $20 million buyout by Carilion of two Roanoke-based clinics--the Center for Advanced Imaging and the Center for Surgical Excellence. While these two centers had reputations for offering quality care at much lower price than Carilion's, consumers' out-of-pocket expenses for procedures were likely to rise by almost 900 percent in the wake of the acquisition by reducing competition sharply, the FTC predicted.

While the Consent Agreement itself won't become public record until it's agreed upon by both Carilion and the FTC, Carilion says that the proposed remedy "completely restores the competition that was alleged to have been eliminated by the acquisition." We'll have to wait a few weeks to see just what that means.

To learn more about the settlement:
- read this FTC legal notice (.pdf)

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