Jury awards $1.6M to Iowa surgery center in anti-competition case

Pierce Street Same Day Surgery was awarded $1.6 million in damages after a jury ruled that its CEO conspired with a competing physician group to develop a new surgery center, the Sioux City Journal reports.

What you should know:

1. The case began in 2017, when five physicians affiliated with Pierce Street and Tri-State Specialists began developing the $32 million Riverview Surgical Center in South Sioux City, Iowa.

Pierce Street sued the physicians and Tri-State, alleging breach of contract and violation of non-compete clauses.As a result of their involvement in Riverside, Pierce Street revoked the ownership stakes of five physicians.

2. The physicians, former Pierce Street CEO Lee Hilka, and Tri-State sued back, claiming that Pierce Street had wrongfully terminated the physicians and interfered with the development of Riverside.

3. The jury found both parties at fault, saying Mr. Hilka conspired with Tri-State to interfere with Pierce Street's physician contracts. Two physicians were found to have violated the non-compete clauses in their contracts. The jury found Pierce Street at fault for breaching operating agreements with five physicians when it terminated the physicians' membership interests.

4. Pierce Street received $1.6 million in damages to be paid, in varying amounts, by Mr. Hilka, Tri-State, Adam Smith, MD, and William Samuelson, MD.

5. Pierce Street will pay $231,808 to the physicians whose membership interests were terminated. They will split it in varying amounts.

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