Statement of FTC's Bureau of Competition regarding Inova Health System's Announced Withdrawal of Plans to Merge with Prince William Health System

For Release

After a thorough investigation, the FTC filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia on May 12, 2008, seeking an injunction to stop the proposed combination of Inova and Prince William hospitals. The complaint alleges that the transaction would be anticompetitive and would result in higher health care costs for Northern Virginia consumers. The FTC also proceeded with an administrative complaint. (See press release at: http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2008/05/inovapi.shtm).

Today’s decision by the parties to abandon their transaction follows a preliminary district court hearing and extensive disclosure by the FTC of the strong evidence in support of its case. A final decision by the federal court on the FTC’s injunction request was anticipated next month.
“We believe our success in stopping this proposed deal is a major victory for Northern Virginia consumers and affirms the critical importance of competition in the health care industry,” said Jeffrey Schmidt, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Competition. “Our litigation team did a tremendous job in marshaling the evidence necessary to prove this transaction would have violated the antitrust laws.”

The FTC’s Bureau of Competition works with the Bureau of Economics to investigate alleged anticompetitive business practices and, when appropriate, recommends that the Commission take law enforcement action. To inform the Bureau about particular business practices, call 202-326-3300, send an e-mail to antitrust@ftc.gov, or write to the Office of Policy and Coordination, Room 394, Bureau of Competition, Federal Trade Commission, 600 Pennsylvania Ave, N.W., Washington, DC 20580. To learn more about the Bureau of
Competition, read “Competition Counts” at http://www.ftc.gov/competitioncounts.

Contact Information

Media Contact:
Mitchell J. Katz,
FTC Office of Public Affairs

202-326-2180
Staff Contact:
Norman Armstrong,
Bureau of Competition
202-326-2072