Com­peti­tor latest to file suit against Fla. sys­tem Health First

Modern Healthcare - - REGIONAL NEWS - —Lisa Schencker

A public hos­pi­tal has joined a num­ber of Florida providers al­leg­ing in­te­grated sys­tem Health First is en­gag­ing in un­fair busi­ness prac­tices.

Par­rish Med­i­cal Cen­ter, a 210-bed hos­pi­tal in Ti­tusville, Fla., op­er­ated by the North Bre­vard County Hos­pi­tal Dis­trict, filed its com­plaint against Health First in state court Aug. 27. In Bre­vard County, Health First owns and op­er­ates health plans, hos­pi­tals, physi­cian groups, ur­gent-care cen­ters, out­pa­tient cen­ters, re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion fa­cil­i­ties, di­ag­nos­tic and treat­ment cen­ters and a net­work of fit­ness and well­ness ser­vices.

Among other things, Par­rish al­leges that Health First re­quires its doc­tors to ad­mit and re­fer al­most ex­clu­sively to its fa­cil­i­ties; re­fuses to con­tract with providers un­less they agree to re­fer al­most ex­clu­sively to Health First; and won’t al­low its doc­tors to re­fer to physi­cians who don’t re­fer all or nearly all their pa­tients to Health First.

Health First Vice Pres­i­dent of Mar­ket­ing and Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Matthew Ger­rell called the law­suit “a dis­trac­tion” and said the sys­tem wants to work with Par­rish’s CEO to re­solve the is­sues, but he hasn’t co­op­er­ated.

Health First faces at least two other on­go­ing law­suits tar­get­ing its busi­ness prac­tices.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.