Antitrust aspects of exclusive contracts in medical imaging.
Exclusive contracts between radiologists and hospitals may be more frequently scrutinized for antitrust violations because of the Hyde v Jefferson Parish Hospital District No. 2 case. In the Hyde case, the lower court decided antitrust law had been violated, and it was the first antitrust case about exclusive medical contracts to be reviewed by the U.S. Supreme Court. The case is a precedent for considering similar circumstances according to traditional business antitrust analyses such as per se violations, tying arrangements, group boycott, and market foreclosure. Areas that may be scrutinized for anticompetitiveness include hospital privileges when radiologists have exclusive contracts with the community's only hospital or provide services unique within an area, and physicians' access to scarce resources (e.g., computed tomography [CT], magnetic resonance [MR] imaging). Radiologists must understand antitrust implications of their hospital contracts; examine the terms of staff appointment, bylaws, and rights; and be able to guide their attorneys through contract negotiations.
James, AE; Sloan, FA; Hamilton, R; Chick, B; Zaner, RM; Pendergrass, HP; Stephens, WH; Quimby, CW; Greeson, T
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