Health Law Observer

Timely insights and legal commentary on various health care issues and developments surrounding regulations, employment, transactions and a range of key industry matters. This blog is maintained by the Health Care Department of Stevens & Lee.

Novant Health Abandons Proposed Purchase Following Fourth Circuit’s Issuance of Injunction

After a split Fourth Circuit panel granted the FTC’s motion for injunction and enjoined Novant Health’s hospital acquisitions pending appeal, Novant announced that it was abandoning the planned purchase.
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District Court Denies Most Recent FTC Attempt to Stop Novant/CHS Transaction

The District Court denied the FTC’s requested injunction, but it did grant the FTC’s alternate request to extend the temporary restraining order that has been in place until June 21 to allow the FTC time to seek an injunction from the Fourth Circuit.
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District Court Denies FTC Request to Block Novant’s Purchase of Hospitals from CHS — Purchase Can Go Forward

We delve into the District Court’s analysis of the FTC’s arguments and how assessments of competitive benefits weighed against assertions of competitive harm.
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District Court Dismisses Welsh Carson While Allowing the FTC to Proceed Against U.S. Anesthesia Partners

HHS has issued a final rule under the Affordable Care Act which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability or sex in covered health care programs and activities.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Issues Final Rule Expanding Nondiscrimination Protections

HHS has issued a final rule under the Affordable Care Act which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability or sex in covered health care programs and activities.

Charles M. Honart Recognized by JD Supra as Among the Top Authors on Health Care and M&A

Charles M. Honart has garnered two 2024 JD Supra Readers’ Choice Awards in the areas of Health Care and M&A as a result of his insightful authorship on the Health Law Observer blog.

Spring Cleaning: Why Businesses Should Take Time Now to Review Corporate Records and Agreements

To maximize the efficiency of any strategic transactions, refinancings or a range of other plans later in the year, spring is an ideal time for business owners to take inventory of their corporate records, governing documents and other relevant agreements.

The FTC’s Final Rule – A Sweeping Ban on Noncompetes

We examine the Federal Trade Commission’s intention for banning noncompete clauses, and key details, exceptions and upcoming challenges to the final rule.
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Maryland Extends Reach of the FTC’s Proposed Noncompete Ban to Veterinary and Health Care Professionals

Though Maryland’s actions follow a nationwide trend to significantly limit noncompetes, the state goes further by covering the “gap” left within the FTC’s Proposed Rule.

FTC Announces Special Open Commission Meeting and Vote on Rule Banning Noncompete Clauses

The FTC’s virtual Open Commission Meeting will be held for purposes of voting on whether to issue a proposed final rule that would generally prevent most employers from enforcing noncompete clauses against workers.

HIPAA Implications of Using Web and App Data Tracking Tech

Website and app data tracking technologies may fall under HIPAA scrutiny when electronic protected health information is collected.
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Health Care Antitrust Update Part II: Recent Federal and State Enforcement Initiatives and Litigation Involving the FTC’s Constitutional Authority

The FTC, DOJ and HHS launched a major public inquiry into merger and acquisition transactions involving private equity firms, health systems and private payers to learn more about the impact of these efforts.

Health Care Antitrust Update Part I: Key Developments in Antitrust Litigation Involving Health Care Acquisitions and Mergers

Recent lawsuits spotlight the specific types of conduct that may give rise to lawsuits alleging antitrust violations and offer a glimpse into likely developments with respect to federal and state initiatives.

New CMS Informed Consent Guidance for Sensitive Examinations of Unconscious Patients

Effective immediately, the CMS Guidance requires hospitals to ensure that medical professionals obtain and document the patients’ informed consent before sensitive examinations or invasive procedures.

Corporate Transparency Act: Reporting Requirements for Health Care Entities

To comply with the recent Corporate Transparency Act, owners and operators of a wide range of healthcare entities may be subject to report beneficial ownership information.

Update to Federal Substance Use Disorder Treatment Records Privacy Regulations – Part 2

The long-awaited federal Final Rule modifying the regulations that govern the privacy of substance use disorder treatment records remain stricter than HIPAA, especially regarding disclosures.

FTC, DOJ and HHS Launch Public Inquiry into Transactions Involving Private Equity Firms, Health Systems and Private Payers

the Federal Trade Commission, the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division, and the Department of Health and Human Services announced that they were “launching a cross-government public inquiry into private equity and other corporations’ increasing control
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Estate Planning Essentials for Health Care Providers: Protecting Legacy and Loved Ones

Estate planning is especially important for healthcare providers who often have unique assets, liabilities and professional responsibilities.

New York Noncompete Ban Vetoed but Proposal Lives On

New York Governor Cathy Hochul recently vetoed a bill that would have enacted a sweeping ban on non-competition covenants.
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FTC/DOJ Merger Guidelines: Assessment of Rebuttal Evidence

Overall, the focus of this evidentiary review appears to be on whether the merger will produce substantial competitive benefits, i.e., will improve competition in the relevant market or prevent the threat that it may be lessened.
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Analysis: How the FTC and DOJ Final Merger Guidelines Impact on Health Care System Mergers

The merger guidelines will impact every health care system merger. In highly concentrated markets, a merger that eliminates a significant competitor creates significant risk that the merger may substantially lessen competition or tend to create a monopoly.
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New Annual Report Filing for PA Entities: What Should Businesses Consider?

PA entities and businesses should become familiar with the new annual reporting requirements and consider a few practical implications.
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2024 Brings Increased Scrutiny for Merging Health Care Firms

The Guidelines are intended to “reflect modern market realities, advances in economics and law, and the lived experiences of a diverse array of market participants.”
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How Do Personal Health Records Relate to HIPAA?

We delve into how Personal Health Records (PHR) differ from Electronic Health Records, key regulations affecting PHR, and how entities handling PHR approach compliance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act.
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