Evanston (Ill.) Northwestern Healthcare filed an appeal with the Federal Trade Commission to overturn a decision by an FTC administrative law judge that would force the not-for-profit health system to divest one of its three hospitals. Separately, the American Hospital Association weighed in with a friend-of-the-court brief in support of Evanston Northwestern. At deadline, the system's appeal was not publicly available. In October, Administrative Law Judge Stephen McGuire ruled that the 2000 merger between Evanston Northwestern and Highland Park (Ill.) Hospital violated antitrust law. The FTC challenged the merger in 2004 after a retrospective review of several hospital deals. In its amicus brief, the AHA alleged that McGuire "abandoned the established framework for defining geographic markets in hospital merger cases" and "relied exclusively on unsupported and selective testimony from health insurance companies and an admittedly unscientific patient survey." -- by Mark Taylor
Ill. system files appeal in FTC antitrust case
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