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HomeFocus → California Takes On Health Giant Over High Costs

California Takes On Health Giant Over High Costs Print E-mail
Written by Chad Terhune and Ana B. Ibarra | KHN   
Tuesday, 03 April 2018 17:24

California's attorney general sued Sutter Health, accusing the hospital giant of illegally quashing competition and for years overcharging consumers and employers. The lawsuit marked a bold move by state Attorney General Xavier Becerra against the dominant health care system in Northern California as concerns mount nationally about consolidation among hospitals, insurers and other industry middlemen. The antitrust suit, filed in San Francisco County Superior Court, asks the court to prevent Sutter from engaging in anticompetitive practices and "overcharges." It said Sutter employs a variety of improper tactics, such as gag clauses on prices, "punitively high" out-of-network charges and "all-or-nothing" contract terms that require all of its facilities to be included in insurance networks.

Sutter, which owns 24 hospitals, reported net income of $893 million last year on $12.4 billion in revenue. The company's nonprofit health system also has 35 surgery centers, 32 urgent-care clinics and more than 5,000 physicians in its network.

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Last Updated on Friday, 04 May 2018 17:06
 


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