Monopoly is a huge factor in driving up prices and driving down quality in America’s health care sector. After waves of hospital mergers, most Americans now live in communities where only one or two hospitals still compete for their health care dollars, and where competition among health care insurers has also largely disappeared. Meanwhile, competition in the pharmaceutical industry is stymied by patent monopolies and highly concentrated corporate ownership.
Benefits Pro reporter Scott Woolridge reports that the consolidation of market share in health-related industries has happened largely under the radar. He cites Open Markets’ American Concentration Crisis report and interviews Executive Director Barry Lynn on how consolidation is impacting every day Americans. “This stuff could be fixed by the DOJ and the FTC tomorrow,” he says. “There is an ample amount of power in federal and state governments to address this, it’s just not being used.”
Welcome to The Corner. In this issue, we highlight a powerful dissent in the Federal Trade Commission’s settlement with Facebook, discuss why the Trump Administration’s new hospital pricing rule won’t fix American healthcare, and identify three key takeaways from last week’s House subcommittee hearing on Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google.
Axios reporter Sam Baker publishes an exclusive report on Open Markets’ second volume of concentration data looking at consolidation in healthcare-related industry sectors. “America’s health care crisis is brought you by monopoly,” Open Markets policy director Phil Longman told Axios.
Open Markets has filed an amicus brief in support of the plaintiffs appeal in a case against syringe-manufacturing giant Becton, Dickinson & Co. (Becton). The plaintiffs, who are healthcare providers, allege Becton has raised the price and lowered the supply of conventional syringes, safety syringes, and safety IV catheters.
Open Markets Institute filed an amicus brief to the Seventh Circuit Court in support of the plaintiffs in Marion Diagnostic Center v. Becton, Dickinson & Co. The plaintiffs, who are health care providers, allege that Becton, Dickinson & Co. illegally dominated the markets for conventional syringes, safety syringes, and safety IV catheters.