Oral arguments will not be heard Tuesday in a dispute over the award of an exclusive radiology services contract at Maui Memorial Medical Center to RadCare, a Dallas-based company.
Instead, lawyers for both RadCare and Maui Radiology Associates, the current holder of the contract, will submit written legal briefs to the state Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs' Office of Administrative Hearings.
In an email Friday, Senior Hearings Officer David Karlen said: "The parties have agreed to submit the matter on the briefs without the need for oral argument."
The Tuesday hearing that had been scheduled in Honolulu was canceled, he said.
Initial briefs were submitted Thursday and reply briefs are due Monday, he said.
Attorneys representing Maui Radiology Associates argue that RadCare was not a responsible or responsive bidder and should not have been awarded the contract because MRA submitted the only bid proposal that included radiologists who are board-certified, state-licensed and available to render services on-site at the hospital.
RadCare officials countered that the company has met all the requirements of the hospital's request for proposals and that it has recruiting specialists dedicated to hiring physicians after a contract is signed. The company pledged to be fully staffed and ready to provide radiology services at Maui Memorial when the new contract takes effect Thursday.
RadCare is a division of EmCare, a national health services company based in Texas.
Maui Memorial officials said MRA competed in a scored request for proposal process and finished last in a field of four bidders. The hospital said that it expects to save $600,000 per year with the new contract, although doctors with MRA said that savings is debatable because of the potential for lost referrals.
The hospital's Medical Executive Committee recommended keeping MRA in place for radiology services, but the panel was overruled in a May 29 vote by the Maui Regional Board. The board rendered the final decision.