WASHINGTON, Nov 13 (Reuters) - The U.S. Federal Trade
Commission filed a lawsuit aimed at stopping Methodist Le
Bonheur Healthcare, which has four hospitals in the Memphis
area, from acquiring two more in a deal valued at $350 million,
the agency said on Friday.
The five FTC commissioners voted unanimously to bring the
lawsuit, which would stop Methodist from buying two hospitals,
known as St. Francis, now owned by Tenet Healthcare Corp.
The purchase would reduce the number of hospital systems
providing general acute care in the Memphis area from four to
three and give Methodist some 60% of that market, the agency
The companies said in a statement that they were "surprised"
by the FTC opposition. "We are reviewing this recent action by
the FTC and actively considering next steps," said Sally
Hurt-Deitch, CEO of Saint Francis Healthcare and Michael
Ugwueke, president of Methodist Le Bonheur, in a joint email
(Reporting by Diane Bartz
Editing by Nick Zieminski)