Lawrence Wasden The Office of Lawrence Wasden
Four physicians reached a settlement with Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden on Monday after refusing to provide on-call services to a Rexburg hospital.
Drs. Barry Peterson, Brian Christensen, Jay McMaster and Robert Coray allegedly violated the Idaho Competition Act, which forbids two or more people from acting together in a manner that would be detrimental to commerce.
“I am pleased that my office has amicably resolved this matter with these four doctors,” Wasden said. “I hope other businesses and individuals will find some guidance in the terms outlined in today’s settlement agreements.”
In January, the doctors allegedly stopped providing on-call care at the hospital, because they believed they should be receiving additional pay for their services. Traditionally, doctors at the hospital were not compensated for on-call services in return for hospital privileges.
The attorney general claimed the doctors' actions violated state antitrust laws and was an anticompetitive tactic.
As part of the settlement, the doctors have agreed not to conspire with other doctors in future financial negotiations with the hospital.
The state's investigation into the case is ongoing and Wasden stressed the settlement does not take into account the merits of paying doctors when they are on call.