Navigation Links
Doctors Not Exempt from Competition Law, Australian Commission Warns

Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has warned doctors against operating closed shops and told them firmly they are not above the competition law . The Commissionss chairman Graeme Samuel last week brushed aside as untenable the claims that patient care somehow overrode other laws.

He also called upon the Australian Medical Association to change the "culture that the medical profession should be exempt from the Trade Practices Act".

"Sorry, there is no one else who is exempt and there is no reason you should be."

Samuel was speaking after the ACCC successfully sued two eminent Adelaide heart surgeons for anti-competitive conduct. Federal Court judge John Mansfield found on Thursday that John Knight and Iain Ross had breached competition law between 2001 and 2004 for preventing qualified cardiothoracic surgeon Craig Jurisevic from practising heart surgery in Adelaide.

The pair also admitted they attempted to enter into a "no-compete" arrangement with another heart surgeon, James Edwards, which meant they would not take private cases at his hospital if he agreed not to work at theirs.

Justice Mansfield found that while the respondents acted in good faith and did not know they were in breach of competition law, they effectively operated a closed shop that inhibited the entry of other surgeons to the Adelaide heart-surgery market.

He imposed a civil penalty of $55,000, plus $5000 towards the ACCC's legal expenses, on both Dr Knight and Dr Ross.

Dr Jurisevic said he was considering a civil action for loss of income, estimated at more than $2 million.

The full-time thoracic surgeon is also an Australian Army reservist and served with Australian forces in East Timor last year, receiving the Australian Service Medal in recognition of his efforts.

He also spent a month in the frontlines of the war-torn Serbian province of Kosovo in 1999, as well as a yea r in the Palestinian territory of Gaza in the early 1990s.

Meantime the South Australian president of the AMA, Peter Ford, called on the ACCC to recognise that doctors must sometimes work "in association" and that this did not mean "collusion".

"The ACCC needs to look at the context of doctors working as a group ... where its rulings can conflict with clinical scenarios," Dr Ford said.

For example, he said obstetricians working in a maternity unit could provide a better service if the staff and doctors "know each other well".

"If you have the door open for all-comers it may cause problems for that unit," he said.

And competition law also created confusion among other specialist doctors who work in teams, in setting their fees and in deciding which doctors would be in the team and who would be left out.

"In a team setting there is not only the issue of fees but also clinical considerations that don't apply in private business situations," Dr Ford said.

In 2002, the ACCC won an action against three obstetricians in Rockhampton, Queensland, who had agreed on higher fees if they treated the others' patients.

The action resulted in one of the doctors leaving Rockhampton, reducing obstetrics services in the region.

The AMA called it a "witch hunt".

Last month, in a rare win for doctors, the ACCC granted an authorisation to GPs working in the same practice, to allow them to set the same prices for consultations and hospital services.


Related medicine news :

1. Cancer Doctors Okays Controversial Prostate Therapy
2. Doctors needed urgently in Gujarat
3. Doctors operate upon patients in candlelight- latest from the quake scene
4. Doctors at risk- the ugly side of the noble profession
5. Doctors advice early anemia tests
6. Emphasis to ban Drugs ads by Doctors
7. Doctors not to accept gifts from drug companies
8. Gene testing kit specific for Doctors
9. Doctors warned of fluoride toxicity
10. Doctors decisions are affected by fear of lawsuits- says a study
11. Bihar High Court Intervenes To End Doctors Strike
Post Your Comments:

(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... Quality metrics are proliferating in cancer care, ... remain in the eye of the beholder, according to experts who offered insights and ... Journal of Managed Care. For the full issue, click here . , For ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... Brent Kasmer, a legally blind and certified personal trainer is ... a fitness app. The fitness app plans to fix the two major problems leading the ... one size fits all type program , They don’t eliminate all the reasons ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... The temporary closing of Bruton Memorial Library on June 21 ... brings up a new, often overlooked aspect of head lice: the parasite’s ability to live ... not a common occurrence, but a necessary one in the event that lice have simply ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... City, Oklahoma (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 ... ... helping both athletes and non-athletes recover from injury. Recently, he has implemented orthobiologic ... the Oklahoma City area —Johnson is one of the first doctors to perform ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Michigan (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Those ... deal with these feelings, many turn to unhealthy avenues, such as drug or alcohol ... of Marne, Michigan, has released tools for healthy coping following a traumatic event. , ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... DUBLIN , June 24, 2016 ... and Markets has announced the addition of the ... their offering. ... products and provides an updated review, including its applications ... covering the total market, which includes three main industries: ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016 Dehaier Medical Systems ... "Company"), which develops, markets and sells medical devices and ... , signed a strategic cooperation agreement with Hongyuan Supply ... Supply Chain") on June 20, 2016, to develop Dehaier,s ... strategic cooperation agreement, Dehaier will leverage Hongyuan Supply Chain,s ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016 ... Market by Type (Standard Pen Needles, Safety Pen Needles), ... (Insulin, GLP-1, Growth Hormone), Mode of Purchase (Retail, Non-Retail) ... MarketsandMarkets, This report studies the market for the forecast ... to reach USD 2.81 Billion by 2021 from USD ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: