Judge Issues Temporary Restraining Order Against Phoebe Putney, Palmyra

A judge has issued a temporary restraining order against Phoebe Putney Health System, barring the system and the Hospital Authority of Albany-Dougherty County from furthering the consolidation of Phoebe Putney with Palmyra Medical Center, both in Albany, Ga., according to an Albany Herald report.

This action comes after the U.S. Supreme Court sided with the Federal Trade Commission in its February ruling, finding that Georgia's state action doctrine did not provide immunity to antitrust law or Phoebe Putney's acquisition of Palmyra. In March, the stay on administrative proceedings relating to the Phoebe Putney-Palmyra transaction was lifted — setting in motion for the administrative trial to be scheduled to commence on Aug. 5. In April, the FTC filed renewed motions in the U.S. Court for the Middle District of Georgia seeking a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction to stop the further integration between the two entities.

Yesterday, U.S. District Judge Louis Sands granted the FTC's request for a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction to prevent further integration between Phoebe Putney and Palmyra, or Phoebe North as it was renamed after the acquisition. The two entities have already consummated the transaction, but the FTC wanted to ensure Palmyra's assets and operations are maintained and preserved until an administrative trial is conducted on the merits of the acquisition.

Phoebe officials emphasized Wednesday that the order will not alter the day-to-day operations at Phoebe North, and instead preserves the current state of operations at both campuses until further review by the court.

This order is expected to remain in effect until there is a ruling from the June 14 hearing.

More Articles on Phoebe Putney and Palmyra Medical Center:

Phoebe Putney Health System Names Audrey Pike Chief Compliance Officer
FTC Seeks Temporary Restraining Order on Phoebe Putney, Palmyra Merger
Fitch: Supreme Court Ruling Siding With FTC Negative for Investor-Owned Hospitals

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