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Antitrust Enforcers Rachet Up Scrutiny of Private Equity and Labor Issues in Healthcare – Health Law Scan

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Federal antitrust enforcers at the US Department of Justice (DOJ) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) continue to take an aggressive stance in healthcare. Two recent developments underscore the trend.

First, in early June 2022, in remarks at the ABA’s Antitrust in Healthcare Conference, the DOJ Antitrust Division criticized consolidation in the healthcare industry. In particular, Deputy Assistant Attorney General (DAAG) Andrew Forman called out the role of private equity as a force that has an undue focus on short-term profits and aggressive cost cutting, which will cause the DOJ to look less favorably on private equity firms in healthcare transactions in the future.

DAAG Forman identified four areas the agency is “thinking more about” when it comes to the role of private equity in healthcare, although it is not yet clear where this “thinking” will lead:

> So-called “roll-ups” where private equity firms consolidate in a series of small transactions. This concern is not limited to the DOJ. In fact, in mid-June the FTC announced a consent decree in a veterinary clinic transaction that imposed a 10-year pre-notice and preapproval requirement for future deals by a private equity investor and the divestiture purchaser. The FTC’s announcement cited the concern over “stealth […]

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