UnitedHealth's Change Healthcare Acquisition Approved By Judge – Kaiser Health News

The Justice Department had been challenging the $13 billion acquisition on antitrust grounds, but a federal judge disagreed, on the condition UnitedHealth divest Change’s claims editing subsidiary, ClaimsXten. Separate reports say Ascension is losing almost $2 billion a year as expenses climb.
Stat: UnitedHealth May Acquire Change Healthcare, Judge Rules
A federal judge on Monday shot down the U.S. Justice Department’s legal challenge to UnitedHealth Group’s $13 billion acquisition of the technology company Change Healthcare. (Bannow, 9/19)
The Wall Street Journal: Judge Rejects Antitrust Challenge To UnitedHealth Acquisition
The court ruling represents an early blow to stepped-up antitrust enforcement by the Biden administration, which sued in February to block the deal. The Justice Department’s top antitrust official, Jonathan Kanter, said the department disagreed with the decision and was considering its next steps. (Mathews and Kendall, 9/19)
In other health care industry news —
Modern Healthcare: Ascension Loses Almost $2 Billion In A Year As Expenses Climb
Ascension is the latest healthcare organization to report financial woes in a post-pandemic environment with rising expenses and no signs of relief. The St. Louis-based not-for-profit health system posted a $1.84 billion net loss in its latest fiscal year, which ended June 30, according to an audit report released last week. A year ago, Ascension reported annual net income of $5.67 billion. (Hudson, 9/19)
The Washington Post: If John Hopkins Drops CareFirst, Patients' Access To Care Is At Risk 
Johns Hopkins has warned nearly 300,000 patients that their doctors, nurses and other health care providers may no longer accept CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield health insurance as soon as Dec. 5, jeopardizing patients’ access to care. Hopkins and CareFirst are at an impasse over rates the insurance company pays for care at Hopkins, a major provider of primary, specialized and outpatient surgical services in the region. (Portnoy, 9/19)
The Boston Globe: Protesters Target Children’s Hospital As Hundreds Rally To Defend It
A handful of protesters opposed to the services Boston Children’s Hospital provides to transgender patients faced off against hundreds of counterdemonstrators along Longwood Avenue for several hours Sunday as heavily armed Boston police officers kept the two groups separate. (Hilliard, 9/18)
Chicago Tribune: Lurie Children's Hospital Gender Program Targeted On Twitter
Lurie Children’s Hospital has increased security and moved a transgender youth support group from in-person meetings to virtual ones after it became the latest children’s hospital to face criticism online over its gender development program. (Schencker, 9/19)
Also —
AP: NC Cancer Hospital Named For Late Senate Leader Basnight 
The North Carolina Cancer Hospital was formally named Monday for the late state Senate leader Marc Basnight, who helped approve the state funds to build the facility and later create a special state cancer research fund. (9/19)
Becker's Hospital Review: Texas Hospital's Longest-Serving Nurse To Retire After 45 Years
Palestine (Texas) Regional Medical Center's longest-serving nurse is planning to retire in June 2023 after more than 45 years with the hospital. Regina Parish is a licensed vocational nurse who's worked in case management at Palestine Regional Medical Center for the past 22 years. She first joined the hospital, then called Memorial Hospital, in 1979 as a nurse on the surgical floor. In 1986, she transferred to a discharge planning position before moving to case management in 2000 when the town's two hospitals merged to become Palestine Regional Medical Center. (Bean, 9/19)
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