In today’s open meeting of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), ACEP Executive Director Sue Sedory delivered candid and compelling remarks about emergency physicians severely challenged by the fallout from ever-increasing acquisitions in health care.
Ms. Sedory used the platform as an opportunity to serve as a voice for the thousands of emergency physicians navigating the abrupt collapse of private equity-owned APP. These disrupted doctors continued serving patients with no promise of pay and lost insurance coverage as they shoulder unforeseen personal and professional pressures that come with navigating a career transition.
“APP spent 8x multiples on practice acquisitions then walked away from almost $500M accumulated debt, leaving a devastating wake – like others before and no doubt, others after,” Ms. Sedory said.
Further exacerbating the situation, “Corporately motivated abdications like APP don’t give small practices the chance to organize and step in; they simply lead to further consolidation, horizontally and vertically. And with growing insurer strength, especially in taking over physician practices for themselves, physician groups of all sizes are finding it impossible to compete financially, and losing leverage to ensure patients and physicians are appropriately cared for.”
Some progress is being made and ACEP will take every opportunity to defend our members.
“Recent FTC actions, including proposed merger guideline updates, are an important first step in reining in health care consolidation,” Ms. Sedory said. She also praised the FTC proposal to ban non-compete clauses in employment contracts.
We will not relent in our push for solutions that protect emergency physicians from becoming collateral damage of corporate profiteering.