Proposed Consent Agreement In the Matter of Roaring Fork Valley Physicians I.P.A., Inc., FTC File No. 061 0172
This action doesn't make sense because Medicare's fee schedule is itself an instrument of price-fixing. For this IPA to insist on *not* beginning negotiations on contracts using the fee schedule is a step *away* from price-fixing. And asking for COLA provisions, likewise, simply recognizes the need for sustainable contracts which, again, is the *opposite* of linking fees to the Medicare price-fixing scheme which, under the current SGR, results in substantial automatic and arbitrary *cuts* in payments for medical services. This action is not consistent with the spirit and intent of the anti-trust laws. Those laws are legitimately applied to situations like the ADM price-fixing that happened some years ago in which ADM and some overseas firms met to fix prices. Here the price-fixing is contained in the Medicare fee schedule.