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Pacific Radiation Oncology, LLC v. Queen's Medical Center

United States District Court, D. Hawaii

January 11, 2017

PACIFIC RADIATION ONCOLOGY, LLC, a Hawai`i Limited Liability Corporation, et al., Plaintiffs,
v.
THE QUEEN'S MEDICAL CENTER, a Hawai`i Non-Profit Corporation, et al., Defendants.

          ORDER RULING ON THE PARTIES' MOTIONS IN LIMINE

          Leslie E. Kobayashi, United States District Judge

         On September 12, 2016, Plaintiffs filed eight motions in limine. [Dkt. nos. 630-34, 636, 638, 640.] On November 1, 2016, Defendants filed a motion in limine. [Dkt. nos. 667 (redacted), 687 (unredacted).] The Counterclaim Defendants filed joinders in Plaintiffs' Motions Limine Nos. 1, 2, 5, and 7 (collectively “Joinders”). [Dkt. nos. 660-62, 664.] This Court has construed the Joinders as joinders of simple agreement, rather than substantive joinders. [EO: Court Order Denying Motions to Strike, filed 12/7/16 (dkt. no. 701), at 2.]

         On December 6, 2016, the motions in limine - with the exception of Plaintiffs' Motions in Limine Nos. 4 and 8, [dkt. nos. 636, 640, ] which are scheduled for hearing on February 7, 2017 - came on for hearing before this Court. After careful consideration of the motions in limine, supporting and opposing memoranda, and the relevant legal authority, this Court HEREBY RULES as follows.

         I. General Issues

         The following issues each affect multiple motions in limine:

         A. Free-Riding Defense

         This Court granted summary judgment in favor of Plaintiffs/Counterclaim Defendants as to Defendants/Counter Claimants' unfair methods of competition claim based on free-riding. See Order Granting in Part & Denying in Part Plfts.' Motion for Summary Judgment on the Counterclaim Filed Feb. 25, 2015 [Dkt. 175-1], 2014 WL 6749117, at *9 (D. Hawai`i Nov. 30, 2014). However, this Court's ruling does not preclude Defendants from asserting that: 1) they had a legitimate business interest in preventing free-riding; and 2) the prevention of free-riding is a defense to Plaintiffs' claims asserting that Defendants engaged in anti-competitive conduct. Cf. Eastman Kodak Co. v. Image Tech. Servs., Inc., 504 U.S. 451, 485 n.33 (1992) (noting that Continental T.V., Inc. v. GTE Sylvania Inc., 433 U.S. 36, 55 (1977), and Monsanto Co. v. Spray-Rite Serv. Corp., 465 U.S. 752, 762-63 (1984), “accepted free-riding as a justification because without restrictions a manufacturer would not be able to induce competent and aggressive retailers to make the kind of investment of capital and labor necessary to distribute the product”); Chicago Prof'l Sports Ltd. P'ship v. Nat'l Basketball Ass'n, 961 F.2d 667, 674 (7th Cir. 1992) (“Control of free-riding is accordingly an accepted justification for cooperation.”). To the extent that any of Plaintiffs' motions in limine ask this Court to exclude categorically evidence and argument regarding free-riding as a defense, Plaintiffs' motions in limine are DENIED.

         B. Off-Set

         This Court CONCLUDES that the amount of additional compensation that any Plaintiff received from the treatment of patients at The Cancer Centers of Hawaii (“TCCH”) - after Defendant The Queen's Medical Center (“Queen's” or “QMC”) adopted the closed-department model for its radiation oncology department, compared to the compensation that Plaintiff would have received from the treatment of the same patients at Queen's - is relevant to the issue of Plaintiffs' damages. The additional compensation that Plaintiffs received by treating patients at TCCH off sets the physician fees that they lost once they were not able to treat their patients at Queen's. Similarly, the compensation that Plaintiffs received from the treatment of patients at TCCH prior to Queen's adoption of the closed-department model is relevant to show whether, and if so, how much, Plaintiffs' compensation from the treatment of patients at TCCH changed after Queen's adopted the closed-department model. To the extent that any of Plaintiffs' motions in limine ask this Court to exclude evidence and argument regarding Plaintiffs' TCCH compensation for purposes of off-set, Plaintiffs' motions in limine are DENIED.

         C. The List Patients' Medical Information

         On November 23, 2016, this Court issued its Order Ruling on Remaining Issues in Pending Appeals from the Magistrate Judge's Orders (“11/23/16 Order”). 2016 WL 6996982. On December 7, 2016, Defendants filed a motion for reconsideration of the 11/23/16 Order, and this Court recently denied that motion. [Dkt. nos. 702, 724.] Thus, even if de-identified, all of the List Patients' medical records, as well as any other document containing any List Patient's medical information, are inadmissible, unless the proponents of the document establish that they obtained the patient's consent to use his or her medical information in this litigation. To the extent that any of Plaintiffs' motions in limine seek to exclude any of the List Patients' medical information, Plaintiffs' motions in limine are GRANTED, unless the proponent of the evidence establishes consent.

         To the extent that any party intends to introduce any other patient's medical information, this Court will address the issues of consent and de-identification on a case-by-case basis.

         This Court now turns to its rulings on the individual motions in limine.

         II. Plaintiffs' Motion in Limine No. 1 to Exclude the Expert Testimony of Ron DiGiamo [ dkt. no. ...


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