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Susquehanna Health rejected partnership talks with Geisinger before joining UPMC, court filing reveals

Before Susquehanna Health joined Pittsburgh-based UPMC in 2016, it shut down partnership discussions with Danville, Pa.-based Geisinger, according to court filings cited by the Patriot-News.

The findings were revealed in court documents submitted by UPMC about a settlement to resolve the U.S. Justice Department's antitrust lawsuit challenging Danville, Pa.-based Geisinger's partial acquisition of Evangelical Community Hospital, a 132-bed hospital in Lewisburg, Pa.

The settlement prevents Geisinger from taking a 30 percent interest in Evangelical Community Hospital. Under the settlement, which still needs approval from the court, Geisinger must cap its ownership interest in Evangelical at 7.5 percent.

The comments submitted by UPMC claim that Geisinger "had long feared" that Evangelical could partner with a different hospital system to compete more intensely against it and that Geisinger's concerns were "heightened in 2017 when Evangelical announced it was looking for a strategic partner."

“This occurred just after Susquehanna Health System joined UPMC in 2016, having rejected overtures from Geisinger," the comments read.

In response, Geisinger spokesperson Joseph Stender told the Patriot-News: "While we can’t speak to specific situations, we often engage in discussions with like-minded organizations interested in supporting the ongoing health and wellbeing of our patients, members and neighbors."

Read more here.

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