FTC requests more info, extends waiting period for proposed Optum acquisition of LHC Group

The Federal Trade Commission is requesting additional information regarding the proposed acquisition of the LHC Group by UnitedHealth Group's Optum, according to Securities and Exchange Commission documents filed June 10.

The request also extends the waiting period the FTC is allowed to challenge the proposal under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 until the 30th day after "substantial compliance" with the request.

UnitedHealth first announced its intention to acquire the Lafayette, La.-based home-health and hospice provider for $5.4 billion in March. If approved, the purchase will strengthen UnitedHealth's ability to provide value-based care within a patient's home, the companies said in a March 29 news release. LHC has operations in 37 states and cares for more than 500,000 patients annually.

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