California Blood Products Company Settles Antitrust Lawsuit Filed Against American Red Cross
Officials at HemaCare, a Woodland Hills-based company that provides blood products and services to medical facilities, said yesterday that the company settled a lawsuit that accused the American Red Cross of anticompetitive practices, the Los Angeles Times reports. The lawsuit, filed in federal court in Los Angeles in 2000, alleged that the Red Cross bundled blood products sold to medical facilities and charged a higher price for blood platelets in exchange for a reduced price for red blood cells. As a result, HemaCare officials said that the company could not compete with the Red Cross, although the company charged a lower price for blood platelets. Under terms of the settlement, the Red Cross "agreed not to bundle blood-related products and services in New England or the Carolinas" in violation of antitrust laws, HemaCare said. "We are pleased that this issue has been resolved to everyone's satisfaction. We look forward to continuing our practice of providing a safe and available blood supply nationwide," Allan Ross, senior vice president and chief operating officer of American Red Cross Biomedical Services, said in a statement. The Red Cross admitted no wrongdoing and paid no damages in the settlement, HemaCare spokesperson JoAnn Stover said (White, Los Angeles Times, 12/17).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.