3 Texas health systems settle lawsuit alleging they colluded to stifle nurse pay

Alia Paavola - Print  | 

Ending more than a decade of litigation, three Texas health systems settled claims that they colluded to depress the salaries of registered nurses in San Antonio and four other cities, according to court documents.

The hospital systems in San Antonio — Baptist Health Systems, Methodist Healthcare System and Christus Santa Rosa Health Care Corp. —  as well as the three nurses who were the plaintiffs filed a joint stipulation of dismissal to the U.S. District Judge Orlando Garcia of the Western District of Texas last week, according to Law 360.

In the case, which has been pending since 2006, the trio of nurses alleged that the hospitals worked together to avoid pay increases for registered nurses between 2002 and 2007 in San Antonio, Chicago, Detroit, Albany, N.Y., and Memphis, Tenn. They claimed this was a violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act.

According to the complaint, the three hospitals exchanged information about nurse wages, and agreed not to compete with each other for nurses by setting salaries the same. Plaintiffs noted that there was a national nursing shortage during the time of the alleged collusion.

The nurses were Marissa Maderazo, Roselia Pollard and Barbara Miles.

The parties informed the court on Dec. 6 that they had reached a settlement in principle after attending mediation. As a result, they filed a joint stipulation of dismissal to the court.

The parties didn't publicly disclose the settlement in principle.

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