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March 11, 2022  

FTC and Rhode Island AG Successfully Blocked Merger Between Rhode Island’s Two Largest Health Systems and Signaled Potential New Direction for Merger Enforcement

This Bulletin is brought to you by AHLA’s Antitrust Practice Group.
  • March 11, 2022
  • Kevin Hahm , Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP
  • Chris Dufek , Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP

On February 17, 2022, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Rhode Island Attorney General (RI AG) each moved to block a merger between Rhode Island’s two largest health systems: Lifespan Corporation (Lifespan) and Care New England Health System (CNE). The FTC voted unanimously to file an administrative complaint that alleged the proposed merger would violate Section 7 of the Clayton Act. Following its own review, RI AG issued a lengthy opinion that denied the merger application under state law, finding that it would result in “extraordinary market power” in a number of hospital service markets within the state. The FTC and State of Rhode Island subsequently filed a joint complaint in federal court seeking a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction to block the proposed merger pending the resolution of the administrative action. Lifespan and CNE have since abandoned the merger.


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