United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Indianapolis Division
PRIME HEALTHCARE SERVICES-MONROE, LLC, doing business as MONROE HOSPITAL, Plaintiff,
INDIANA UNIVERSITY HEALTH BLOOMINGTON, INC., doing business as IU HEALTH BLOOMINGTON HOSPITAL EMERGENCY MEDICAL TRANSPORT SERVICES, doing business as IU HEALTH BLOOMINGTON HOSPITAL, Defendant.
ENTRY ON DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO DISMISS
RICHARD L. YOUNG, CHIEF JUDGE
Prime Healthcare Services-Monroe, LLC, d/b/a Monroe Hospital
(“Monroe Hospital”), filed this antitrust action,
alleging violation of both federal and state laws, against
Defendant, Indiana University Health Bloomington, Inc., d/b/a
IU Health Bloomington Hospital Emergency Medical Transport
Services, d/b/a IU Health Bloomington Hospital (“IU
Health Bloomington”). This matter now comes before the
court on Defendant's Motion to Dismiss pursuant to
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6). For the
reasons set forth below, the court GRANTS Defendant's
motion as to Count I and orders the Plaintiff to show cause
why Count II should not be dismissed for lack of subject
matter jurisdiction by Friday, October 28, 2016.
IU Health Bloomington's predecessor, Bloomington
Hospital, was the only provider of emergency medical services
and, through its ambulance service, the only provider of
emergency medical transportation services in Monroe County
and adjacent locations. (Docket No. 1, ¶ 2). In
2006, Monroe Hospital began operations at a location in
Bloomington only a few miles from Bloomington Hospital.
(Id. ¶ 4). In 2011, a series of acquisitions
were completed resulting in Bloomington Hospital now being
known as IU Health Bloomington Hospital and its ambulance
service as IU Health Bloomington Hospital Emergency Medical
Transport Services (“IU Ambulance”).
(Id. ¶¶ 3-4). Throughout this time, Monroe
County and the City of Bloomington had entered into exclusive
agreements, pursuant to Ind. Code § 16-31-5-1, which
permits municipalities to contract for the provision of
emergency medical services, designating IU Ambulance and its
predecessor as the providers of emergency medical
transportation services in Monroe County. (Id.
Hospital accuses IU Health Bloomington of unlawfully abusing
and leveraging a municipally-granted monopoly, in the
provision of emergency medical transportation services in
Monroe County. (Id. ¶ 1). The result, according
to Monroe Hospital, is that IU Health Bloomington has
willfully maintained, protected, and enhanced its monopoly
power in the market for emergency medical services by
engaging in exclusionary, predatory, and unjustifiable
conduct, a violation of federal and Indiana antitrust law.
(Id. ¶ 75). Monroe Hospital brings its action
pursuant to 15 U.S.C. § 2 (Section 2 of the
Sherman Act) (Count I) and Ind. Code § 24-1-2-2
initial matter, IU Health Bloomington submits eight exhibits
for the court to consider, all of which refer to facts and
evidence outside the pleadings. Documents that are (1)
referred to in a complaint, (2) are authentic, and (3) are
central to a plaintiff's claim can be considered in a
Rule 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss without converting it into a
motion for summary judgment. Hecker v. Deere &
Co., 556 F.3d 575, 582 (7th Cir. 2009) (citing
Tierney v. Vahle, 304 F.3d 734, 738 (7th Cir.
2002)). If those requirements are not satisfied, the district
court may also take judicial notice of matters of public
record without converting a 12(b)(6) motion into a motion for
summary judgment. U.S. v. Wood, 925 F.2d 1580, 1582
(7th Cir. 1991). Courts have considered the public record to
include information available on a government website and
proceedings of another court or agency. Henson v. CSC
Credit Services, et al., 29 F.3d 280, 284 (7th Cir.
1994); see also Fed.R.Evid. 201; Denius v.
Dunlap, 330 F.3d 919, 926-27 (7th Cir. 2003) (holding
judicial notice of information from government's official
website is proper); Opoka v. INS, 94 F.3d 392, 394
(7th Cir. 1996) (holding judicial notice of proceedings of
another court or agency is proper).
Health Bloomington asserts that these materials are
appropriate for the court to consider in a Rule
12(b)(6) motion because they are either referred to by
Monroe Hospital in the Complaint and are central to the
claims, or they are public record. (Docket No. 17 at ECF
p. 7). Monroe Hospital disagrees, arguing: (1) they are
central to IU Health Bloomington's state action doctrine
immunity argument, not to Plaintiff's Complaint; (2) they
do not include materials that are subject to judicial notice;
and (3) Exhibits 1 and 6 are not self-authenticating.
(Docket No. 23 at ECF p. 18-20).
eight exhibits attached to IU Health Bloomington's Brief
in Support of its Motion to Dismiss can be divided into two
groups, one group where judicial notice is proper and one
group where it is not. Exhibits 2 and 3 are administrative
orders issued by the Emergency Medical Services Commission of
the Indiana Department of Homeland Security. These agency
proceedings are deemed public record. See Opoka, 94
F.3d at 394. Exhibits 4, 5, 7, and 8 include information that
is available through either Monroe County's webpage or
the State of Indiana's webpage. This information from
government websites is also public record, properly submitted
for judicial notice. See Denius, 330 F.3d at 926-27.
For purposes of this motion, the court will consider these
Exhibit 1, an ambulance agreement between Monroe County and
Bloomington Hospital, and Exhibit 6, Monroe County Ambulance
Advisory Board Meeting Minutes, cannot be deemed public
records based on the information provided by IU Health
Bloomington. There was no information suggesting that the
public has unqualified access to the documents via a website
or otherwise. See Travelers Cas. and Sur. Co. of Am. V.
Consol. City of Indianapolis, Indiana, No.
1:13-cv-01276-MJD-TWP, 2014 WL 5509312, at *2, n.2 (S.D. Ind.
Oct. 21, 2014) (taking judicial notice of meeting minutes of
the Board of Public Works as they are available on a
government website); see also Pension Ben. Guar. Corp. v.
White Consol. Industries, Inc., 998 F.2d 1192, 1197 (3d
Cir. 1993) (holding document is not a public record if the
public does not have unqualified access to it). Here, IU
Health Bloomington provides insufficient information to
qualify Exhibits 1 or 6 as public records that are
appropriate for judicial notice.
neither Exhibit 1 or 6 meet the alternative set of
requirements to be considered by the court for purposes of
the current motion (i.e., neither are referred to in the
Complaint, are authentic, and are central to a
plaintiff's claim). See Hecker, 556 F.3d at 582.
Exhibit 1, the ambulance agreement, is referenced in Monroe
Hospital's Complaint and is, arguably, central to its
claim that the “municipally-granted monopoly” is
the foundation to IU Health Bloomington's exclusionary
conduct. (See Compl. ¶¶ 1, 2, 7, 55).
However, the agreement is not properly authenticated. The
declaration submitted by Attorney Hurley is insufficient to
properly authenticate Exhibit 1 because the declarant
provides no support as to his personal knowledge of the
document and the facts do not provide otherwise. See
Wright v. Associated Ins. Companies Inc., 29 F.3d 1244,
1248 (7th Cir. 1994) (finding it adequate personal knowledge
for the purposes of authentication when affiant, as vice
president, stated that he was charged with administering the
agreement and subsequent amendments within his affidavit);
see also Romanelli v. Suliene, No. 07-C-19-C, 2007
WL 5490671, at *2 (W.D. Wis. May 16, 2007)
(“[D]ocuments must be authenticated. . . [by an]
affidavit of someone who testifies on personal knowledge . .
.”). Exhibit 6 is not referred to in the Complaint or
properly authenticated. Therefore, neither Exhibit 1 nor
Exhibit 6 have been considered for purposes of this motion.
Motion to Dismiss Standard
considering a motion to dismiss pursuant to Federal Rule
of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6), the court takes all
well-pleaded allegations in the complaint as true and draws
all inferences in favor of the plaintiff. Bielanski v.
County of Kane, 550 F.3d 632, 633 (7th Cir. 2008)
(citations omitted). The recitation of facts comes,
therefore, from Monroe Hospital's Complaint. The
“‘[f]actual allegations must be enough to raise a
right to relief above the speculative level.'”
Pisciotta v. Old Nat. Bancorp, 499 F.3d 629, 633
(7th Cir. 2007) (quoting Bell Atlantic Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544 (2007). See also Fed. R.
Civ. P. 8(a). Stated differently, a complaint must include
sufficient facts that “a claim to relief is plausible
on its face.” Hecker v. Deere & Co, 556
F.3d 575, 580 (7th Cir. 2009) (citations omitted). To be
facially plausible, the complaint must allow “the court
to draw the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable
for the misconduct alleged.” Ashcroft v.
Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662 (2009) (citation omitted). Finally,
the court must not apply a heightened pleading standard in
antitrust cases. Endsley v. City of Chicago, 230
F.3d 276, 282 (7th Cir. 2000).