Douglas C. Ross is a partner in the Seattle office of Davis Wright Tremaine, where he concentrates his practice in antitrust and litigation, and an adjunct faculty member at the University of Washington Law School, where he teaches the antitrust course and a seminar on competition in healthcare.
Mr. Ross is a member of the Editorial Advisory Board for the BNA Health Law Reporter. Chambers USA has listed him in Commercial Litigation from 2007-2018. Best Lawyers named him as Seattle’s "Lawyer of the Year" in Health Care Law in 2011, 2017 and 2018, and Seattle’s Antitrust Lawyer of the Year in 2015 and 2019. Best Lawyers also lists him in antitrust law and litigation, commercial litigation, and healthcare law.
Mr. Ross serves as Finance Officer for the ABA’s Antitrust Section and in the recent past was a Section delegate to the ABA’s House of Delegates. He is a past chair of the Section’s Health Care Industry Committee, past chair of the Antitrust Practice Group of the American Health Lawyers Association, and past chair of WSBA’s Antitrust and Consumer Protection Committee.
Before entering private practice, Mr. Ross spent three years at the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice. He received his J.D. from Columbia Law School, where he was a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar, and his B.A. from Tufts University, where he graduated summa cum laude in economics
Mergers, Acquisitions, and Affiliations
Mr. Ross counsels clients in mergers, acquisitions, and joint ventures, represents them in related investigations by federal and state antitrust enforcement authorities, and defends them in litigation. Representative matters include:
State litigation against healthcare acquisition
Representing The Doctors Clinic, a multi-specialty group acquired by CHI/Franciscan Health, in litigation filed by the State of Washington in federal court seeking to declare the transaction anticompetitive and force divestiture. Trial begins mid-March 2019.
Response to FTC investigation regarding healthcare joint venture
Antitrust counsel to large healthcare organization in California currently responding to a civil investigative demand issued by the FTC regarding a joint operating company the organization plans to create with another healthcare organization.
Counsel to newspaper in merger involving failed newspaper
Antitrust counsel to owner of the Honolulu Star-Bulletin in an investigation conducted by the Antitrust Division and State of Hawai`i into the acquisition of the rival Honolulu Advertiser. The Division and State permitted the acquisition to proceed after the failing company defense was successfully demonstrated.
Counsel to academic medical center in acquiring community hospitals
Antitrust counsel to the University of Washington in the affiliation of Northwest Hospital & Medical Center with UW Medicine and the subsequent affiliation with Valley Medical Center, Renton.
Counsel to various healthcare organizations in multiple acquisitions
Antitrust counsel to Providence Health & Services, PeaceHealth, Legacy Health System, and others, in various acquisitions of hospitals and other assets.
Mr. Ross has represented clients under investigation by the antitrust authorities in conduct (non-merger) matters. These investigations have included:
Antitrust counsel to a large healthcare system investigated by the FTC for its proposed acquisition of two cardiology practices.
Represented non-U.S. carrier in criminal investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice into alleged price fixing.
Represented barcode seller in FTC investigation in an "invitation to collude" case. In its publicly available statement, the FTC noted in its conclusion the evidence did not support a charge that a price fixing agreement existed, which could have resulted in a criminal referral.
Represented game manufacturer in an investigation by a state attorney general into an alleged agreement among game companies not to hire employees from each other.
Represented a regional healthcare system investigated by the FTC for allegedly dominating the provision of primary care in multiple markets.
Represented The Seattle Times in an investigation conducted by the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice into allegations that The Times had attempted to monopolize the newspaper market in Seattle. The division closed the investigation and issued a public closing statement explaining its action.
Mr. Ross has represented clients in antitrust litigation, frequently gaining early dismissal of an action or summary judgment on their behalf. Significant litigation has included:
Wahidullah Medical Corp. v. St. Joseph Hospital of Eureka, et al.
Defending St. Joseph Health with respect to antitrust (group boycott, monopolize, and conspiracy), false advertising, unfair competition, and tortious interference claims. (N.D. Cal. ongoing)
Curtis, et al. v. Providence Health and Services
Defending against exclusive-dealing antitrust claims, and other related claims for punitive damages. (D. Alaska ongoing)
Orthopedic Specialty Clinic of Spokane v. Providence Health & Services
Represented healthcare system defending antitrust claim by orthopedic practice that system attempted to monopolize market for orthopedic services by hiring surgeons away from the practice. Case settled favorably after successful summary judgment motion. (Wash. 2017)
3B Medical, Inc. v. ResMed, Inc.
Represented home healthcare provider in antitrust case alleging exclusive dealing with respect to sleep apnea products. (M.D. Fla. 2016)
Clallam County Fire District No. 2 v. Olympic Ambulance
Represented private ambulance company in antitrust dispute with regional fire protection district over delivery of emergency services. Successfully opposed entry of a temporary restraining order. (Clallam Cnty. (Wash.) Super. Ct. 2014)
Witham v. Clallam County Public Hospital District No. 2
Lead counsel to public hospital district sued by oncologist who claimed the hospital monopolized the provision of oncology services by hiring its own providers. On motion to dismiss filed against the complaint, obtained dismissal of Sherman Act damage claims under Local Government Antitrust Act and of all state antitrust claims. (W.D. Wash. 2009)
East Portland Imaging Center and Body Imaging v. Providence Health System and Providence Health Plan
Lead counsel for Providence Health System and its health plan in an antitrust case brought by two outpatient diagnostic imaging centers that were terminated from the plan in favor of two joint ventures formed by Providence and community radiologists. The district court granted summary judgment for Providence and the 9th Circuit affirmed. (D. Oregon 2006; 9th Cir. 2008)
Woodruff v. Hawai’i Pacific Health
Obtained summary judgment for Hawai’i Pacific Health in antitrust litigation filed in state court in Honolulu by a group of pediatric oncologists who were terminated from the health system’s medical group. Plaintiffs asserted claims under the state’s antitrust laws and unfair trade practices act. Currently representing Hawai’i Pacific in similar litigation filed in federal court that includes claims under the Sherman Act and the Lanham Act. Civ. No. 02-1- 0090-01 (BIA) (Cir. Ct., First Cir., Haw. 2008)
Schaff et al. v. Vision Service Plan
Represented Vision Service Plan in an antitrust suit brought by optometrists who had been terminated by VSP for failing to comply with VSP’s conditions and rules. After the Court entered a decision and order denying plaintiffs’ motion for a preliminary injunction, plaintiffs dismissed their complaint. (W.D. Mich. 2002)
United States ex. rel Kimberly Lum v. Vision Service Plan
Represented Vision Service Plan in a qui tam action in which a former employee claimed that VSP presented false claims in connection with providing a vision benefit to Medicaid enrollees. Summary judgment was granted in 2000 for VSP on all false claims allegations. 104 F. Supp. 2d 1237 (D. Haw. 2000)
Walton v. Vision Service Plan
Represented Vision Service Plan in a lawsuit brought by several optometrists who were removed from the plan. After plaintiffs’ motion for a preliminary injunction was denied, plaintiffs dismissed their suit. (Orange Cnty. (Cal.) Super. Ct. 2000)
Van Waters & Rogers v. Shell Chemical Co.
Represented Shell Chemical Company in an antitrust action brought by a former national distributor of Shell’s surfactants alleging that Shell engaged in tying, monopolization, and exclusive dealing. Summary judgment was entered for Shell on principal claims. Plaintiff then dismissed the remainder of the action. (W.D. Wash. 2000)
Kottle v. Northwest Kidney Centers
Represented Northwest Kidney Centers (NKC) in an action brought by a physician who sued NKC for monopolization after NKC opposed his application for a certificate of need that would have allowed him to provide competing dialysis services. The district court granted NKC’s motion to dismiss the complaint on grounds that the actions of NKC were protected from the antitrust laws by the First Amendment’s right to petition. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed. 146 F.3d 1056 (9th Cir. 1998)
Eureka Urethane, Inc. v. Professional Bowlers Association
Obtained summary judgment for the PBA on all claims in advance of trial. At issue was the question of whether broadcasters and sports organizations must allow professional bowlers participating in a televised sports broadcast to display advertisements on their equipment or apparel. The court ruled that the PBA and NBC could properly prohibit such displays. 746 F. Supp. 915 (E.D. Mo. 1990) aff’d, 935 F.2d 990 (8th Cir. 1991)
Admitted to Practice
District of Columbia, 1978
J.D., Columbia Law School, 1978
- Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar
B.A., Economics, Tufts University, 1975, summa cum laude
Memberships & Affiliations
- Adjunct Professor of Law, University of Washington Law School, teaching competition in health law, 2010-present; antitrust law, 2013-present
- Officer, ABA Section of Antitrust Law, 2013-present
- Delegate, ABA House of Delegates, 2013-present
- Member, ABA Section of Antitrust Law Council, 2009-present
- Chair, Antitrust Practice Group, American Health Lawyers Association, 2010-2013; Vice Chair, 2004-2010
- Editorial Advisory Board, BNA Health Law Reporter, 2008-present
- ABA Section of Antitrust Law: Antitrust Section Long Range Planning Committee, 2007-2009; Co-chair, Committee Operations, 2005-2007; Chair, Health Care Industry Committee, 2003-2005; Task Force on Antitrust Section Reserves
- Chair, Consumer Protection and Antitrust Section, Washington Bar Association, 1995-1996
- Selected by Best Lawyers as Seattle's "Lawyer of the Year" in Health Care Law, 2011, 2017-2018
- Selected by Best Lawyers as Seattle's "Lawyers of The Year" in Antitrust Law, 2015, 2019
- Named as one of the "Best Lawyers in America" in Health Care Law by Best Lawyers, 2001-present; named in Antitrust Law, 2010-present; Commercial Litigation, 2011-present
- Named as one of "America’s Leading Lawyers for Business" in Commercial Litigation (Washington) by Chambers USA, 2007-2019
- Selected to "Washington Super Lawyers," Thomson Reuters, 1999-2019
- Awarded "2013 Top Rated Lawyer in Health Care" by American Lawyer Media and Martindale-Hubbell
- Selected to "2012 Top Rated Lawyers Guide to Health Care Law," Corporate Counsel Magazine
- Selected to the national list of "BTI Client Service All-Stars," 2012