Cautioning Bilateral Monopoly Markets In Health Care

Law360, New York (October 17, 2011, 12:57 PM EDT) -- The Obama administration’s emphasis on the creation of integrated health care delivery systems — or Accountable Care Organizations — has catapulted antitrust law to the forefront of the analysis of health care reform. There are frequent discussions of medical integration between providers, exclusive dealing arrangements between insurers and health systems, most favored nation clauses, and provider and insurer market power.

The truth in many markets is that a legacy of insurance company mergers, and provider consolidation into health systems or hospital groups, has left health care markets with what can increasingly be characterized as bilateral monopoly markets. In such markets, a...

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