Reed Smith Client Alerts

Key takeaways

  • Federal antitrust enforcers jointly hosted a public workshop focused on the role of private equity firms and “corporate greed” in health care consolidation, signaling their intention for continued cross-agency cooperation and enhanced antitrust enforcement activity.
  • On the same day, these agencies announced a request for information (RFI) seeking comments on the effects of transactions in health care markets conducted by private equity funds or similar entities. The RFI will inform regulators’ enforcement priorities and future regulations in this space.
  • In light of antitrust enforcers’ continued scrutiny of private equity investment in the health care sector, entities in these markets should consult experienced antitrust counsel regarding their conduct and strategic business decisions.
health care cost

On March 5, 2024, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Antitrust Division, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) (together, the agencies) hosted a public workshop, Private Capital, Public Impact: An FTC Workshop on Private Equity in Health Care, denouncing the purported “financialization” of health care markets. During the workshop, the agencies announced a cross-government inquiry into the impact of private equity investment and other forms of “corporate greed” in the health care sector. As part of the inquiry, the agencies jointly issued a request for information (RFI) seeking public comment on transactions in the health care sector involving private equity firms and other private corporate entities. Responses to the RFI are due by May 6, 2024.

Workshop on private equity in health care

During the virtual public workshop, speakers from the agencies touted enforcers’ recent enhanced scrutinization of private equity firms and their involvement in health care. The workshop featured remarks from agency officials as well as panels of economists, academics, and health care workers. Across the board, the speakers denounced private equity’s role in health care, leaving little room for discussion of the possible benefits – clinical and otherwise – of private capital investments in the health care market.

Officials from each participating agency discussed the agencies’ policy initiatives and enforcement priorities: