Modern Healthcare's Daily Dose
reports that another physician group (this time a PHO in Maine) has agreed (without admitting wrong-doing) to stop price-fixing activities. The Maine attorney general
issued a press release
stating that his office had alleged the PHO violated a state law that allows "[a]greements among competitors on price and other competitively significant contract terms . . . where the joint activities of the providers have a real potential to increase quality of care and reduce cost, and where the joint contracting appears reasonably necessary for the achievement of those benefits to patients and consumers." So far, this year has seen a steady stream of price-fixing cases, some from the FTC
, involving health care providers (mostly physicians). Sooner or later, they will get the message . . . .