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Antitrust laws a hurdle to healthcare overhaul

New York Times, May 27, 2009

Antitrust lawyers say doctors, hospitals, insurance companies and drug makers will be running huge legal risks if they get together and agree on a strategy to hold down prices and reduce the growth of health spending. Robert F. Leibenluft, a former official at the Federal Trade Commission, said, "Any agreement among competitors with regard to prices or price increases—even if they set a maximum—would raise legal concerns." Already, some leaders of the healthcare industry who appeared at the White House on May 11 say the president may have overstated their cost-control commitment.