LINCOLN, Neb. (Legal Newsline) - The proposed merger of two infectious waste collection and treatment providers is facing an antitrust suit filed by the State of Nebraska in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C.
Nebraska Attorney General Jon Bruning is joined in his suit against Stericycle, Inc., and MedServe, Inc., by the State of Missouri and the U.S. Department of Justice.
Bruning has proposed a settlement as part of the suit that, if approved by the court, would resolve any competitive concerns raised by the merger.
Currently, the merger of Stericycle and MedServe raises concern that competition in infectious waste collection and treatment services to hospitals and other critical facilities would be substantially lessened. The two companies would have a service area that includes Nebraska.
Stericycle and MedServe are the only two firms currently able to compete for the customers that generate large quantities of infectious waste in Nebraska.
"If we had allowed this merger to continue, Nebraska medical providers would have seen rising costs for these services," Bruning said. "These costs would then have been passed along to Nebraskans already struggling with high medical bills."
Bruning's proposed settlement requires that the two companies divest to a viable purchaser approved by the U.S. Department of Justice all of MedServe's assets primarily used in the provision of infectious waste collection and treatment services to large customers located in Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma.
The MedServe assets to be divested include a treatment facility in Newton, Kan., and transfer stations in Kansas City, Kan., Oklahoma City, Omaha, Neb., and Bonneville, Mo.