In the Matter of St. Cloud Medical Group/ Centra Care Health #00011

Submission Number:
00011
Commenter:
Andrew Mulder
Organization:
St Cloud Orthopedics
State:
Minnesota
Initiative Name:
In the Matter of St. Cloud Medical Group/ Centra Care Health
Matter Number:

1610096

As a member of an independent single-specialty orthopedic group in St. Cloud, MN, I was disappointed when the merger of Centracare Health (CCH) and St Cloud Medical Group (SCMG) was approved despite the strong recommendation against by the Minnesota Attorney General. I am professionally and personally concerned that CCH's near monopoly on primary and specialty medical care in Central Minnesota will result in reduced choice for the consumer. While CCH may not compel it's employees to refer exclusively within it's closed system, it necessarily creates barriers to out-of-system referrals that patients may not even be aware are possible. The accolades of the St. Cloud Hospital and CCH orthopedics program are well-deserved and are due in large part to the independent group of dedicated orthopedists who who provide excellent patient care to Central Minnesota and valuable income to CCH. It is my sincere hope that the FTC reconsider allowing the merger of CCH and SCMG to proceed and in doing so, preserve patient choice and spurring quality patient care through competition. Andrew A Mulder, MD