Regulators expected to soon examine PinnacleHealth proposals
Ben Allen, General Assignment Reporter | 03.15.17
(Harrisburg) -- Regulators are expected to soon consider two major moves by a midstate health system that could change care in the region for years.
PinnacleHealth's plans to expand will face scrutiny from both federal and state officials.
Now, the Harrisburg-based healthcare giant is back before the Federal Trade Commission and state Attorney General's office.
This time, PinnacleHealth wants to buy four hospitals in the midstate - Heart of Lancaster and Lancaster Regional in Lancaster County, Carlisle Regional in Cumberland County and Memorial Hospital in York.
Tim Greaney, who specialized in this kind of work at the Justice Department, says regulators watch for certain issues.
"This is going to be a very fact-specific inquiry. They look very closely at the zip codes from which the hospitals draw their patients, and what are the commuting patterns for work and so forth," says Greaney.
"The more dispersed geographically the hospitals are, the less likely that they're in direct competition. And if that's the case, the FTC might not be concerned with hospitals that are 48 minutes, or an hour away," he adds.
In a separate deal, PinnacleHealth has also proposed to affiliate with UPMC.
Greaney says in light of that, regulators may also pay close attention to whether there will be enough competition to keep prices from jumping up.
Published in Affordable Care Act