FTC dis­misses com­plaint af­ter Om­ni­care aban­dons merger deal

Modern Healthcare - - LATE NEWS -

The Fed­eral Trade Com­mis­sion dis­missed the com­plaint it filed in Jan­uary to block Om­ni­care’s at­tempt to ac­quire Pharmer­ica Corp., a ri­val in­sti­tu­tional phar­macy com­pany. The FTC voted 4-0 to dis­miss the com­plaint af­ter Om­ni­care al­lowed its ten­der of­fer to ac­quire the out­stand­ing shares of Pharmer­ica to ex­pire. “We’re grat­i­fied that Om­ni­care has aban­doned its ef­forts to ac­quire Pharmer­ica,” FTC Chair­man Jon Lei­bowitz said in a news re­lease. “This deal would have harmed an es­pe­cially vul­ner­a­ble group of pa­tients—those in long-term-care fa­cil­i­ties—as well as tax­pay­ers, who foot much of the bill un­der Medi­care, by rais­ing the price of drugs for Medi­care Part D con­sumers and oth­ers” (Feb. 6, p. 14). The FTC’S ad­min­is­tra­tive com­plaint al­leged the pro­posed deal was an­ti­com­pet­i­tive and could have led to higher drug prices for the 1.6 mil­lion Medi­care ben­e­fi­cia­ries who re­side in skilled-nurs­ing fa­cil­i­ties. Om­ni­care and Pharmer­ica are the two largest long-term­care phar­macy providers in the U.S. The com­bined com­pany would have con­trolled 57% of the in­sti­tu­tional phar­macy mar­ket, ac­cord­ing to the FTC com­plaint.

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