Health Care Antitrust Attorneys for Physicians
The health care markets in which physicians practice have changed dramatically over the last 20 years. These markets continue to evolve and change, and with these changes have come many challenges for physicians. Some of these changes are positive. Advances in technology, for example, have permitted physicians to offer their patients a higher level of care. Advances in pharmaceuticals and treatment methods permit physicians to treat diseases that were once thought incurable. Some of the changes in health care markets, however, have resulted in a steady deterioration in the ability of physicians to (a) treat their patients in a manner they consider best, and (b) earn an appropriate level of compensation for their services. Today, physicians face very large and powerful health insurers that can simply set the level of remuneration they will pay physicians. These health insurers will also, on occasion, establish guidelines that exert significant control on how physicians practice medicine.
The efforts taken by physicians to address the challenges created by large health insurers include, for example, outright mergers of individual practices and the creation of independent practice associations. These efforts and other collaborative efforts can raise antitrust issues under certain conditions. An antitrust issue, however, is not the same thing as an antitrust violation. The antitrust laws have also evolved over time, and collaborative arrangements that were once considered unlawful are now considered beneficial to consumers and therefore lawful. The attorneys at the Law Offices of George M. Sanders, P.C. have extensive experience in advising physicians on how to structure collaborative efforts under the antitrust laws. Physicians have also become more adapt at entering markets that were once the sole domain of hospitals. These efforts oftentimes make physicians and hospitals competitors or rivals. While hospitals are certainly free to compete against physician competitors, the competition must be fair competition. Sometimes, hospitals use their market strength to unfairly compete against a physicians or to prevent their entry into the market as a competitor. This unfair competition sometimes involves outright retaliation against the physician competitor to the extent that he or she needs to practice at the hospital. When this happens, the antitrust laws may provide protection and damages.
The dedicated lawyers at the Law Offices of George M. Sanders, P.C. have extensive experience counseling physicians who are facing unfair competition by a hospital, and litigating antitrust lawsuits against hospitals. The Law Offices of George M. Sanders, P.C. recognizes and understands the challenges that doctors face as they practice medicine in an evolving health care system. Our attorneys have worked with physicians for years, and understands the unique challenges facing physicians. We have advised physicians on a wide range of antitrust issues, and have represented physicians in numerous antitrust lawsuits. In addition, Mr. George M. Sanders has written for Aspen and the AMA on health care antitrust issues: (a) Health Law and Compliance Update, Chapter 3, Antitrust in Evolving And Consolidating Provider and Payer Markets, Published by Aspen, 2007, (b) Competing in the Marketplace: How physicians can improve quality and increase their value in the health care market through medical practice integration, American Medical Association, March 2007.