The Department of Justice announced Wednesday, March 3, that it has reached a settlement with Geisinger Health (Geisinger) and Evangelical Community Hospital (Evangelical) that will resolve the department’s ongoing civil antitrust litigation challenging Geisinger’s partial acquisition of Evangelical.
Among other terms, the settlement requires Geisinger to cap its ownership interest in Evangelical at a 7.5% passive interest and eliminates additional entanglements between the two competing hospitals, according to the Department of Justice.
On August 5, 2020, the Department of Justice Antitrust Division filed a civil antitrust lawsuit challenging Geisinger’s partial acquisition of Evangelical. The department alleged that Geisinger and Evangelical are close competitors for inpatient general acute-care hospital services for patients in a six-county area in central Pennsylvania, where the two hospital systems together account for approximately 70% of the market.
“Now, more than ever, Americans need access to quality healthcare services at affordable prices,” said Richard A. Powers, Acting Assistant Attorney General of the Antitrust Division.
“The anticompetitive agreement between Geisinger and Evangelical reduced their incentives to compete on the price, quality, and availability of high-quality healthcare services, which would have harmed patients in central Pennsylvania,” continued Powers. “Today’s settlement ensures that those patients will continue to benefit from robust competition between Geisinger and Evangelical.”
“We are pleased to have worked with the Department of Justice to develop a resolution that allows us to maintain our investment in the health of this community,” said Matthew Walsh, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Geisinger.
“We are grateful that the Department of Justice acknowledges the investments Geisinger has made to Evangelical to date and we look forward to our continued work on projects that will benefit patients and the community at large,” Walsh continued.
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