Antitrust Enforcement in the Medical Services Industry: What Does It All Mean?

Before 1975, federal antitrust authorities neglected the health care sector, thereby allowing the entrenchment of many anticompetitive practices and institutions that seemed not only “natural,” but also beneficial to the quality and professionalism of doctor-patient relations. While antitrust enforcement shares the usual physician preference for free enterprise, prosecutorial discretion is often feared as eroding professional discretion and even well-intentioned reform. However, strengthened competition in the health services industry offers a way to bring some stability to health policy, and to resolve some of the conflicts between advocates of institutional status quo and enthusiasts for increased governmental regulatory power.

Author(s): Clark C. Havighurst

Download the Article

Read on JSTOR

Volume 58, Issue 1 (pages 89–124)
Published in 1980