Month: April 2007

Dark Daily

April 23, 2007 “Intelligence: Late Breaking Lab News”

Last week, Quest Diagnostics Incorporated released its first quarter earnings, providing a first look at how the battle for UnitedHealth patients is unfolding. Revenue of $1.53 billion was down by 1.7%, compared to first quarter 2006 revenue of $1.56 billion. Quest notes that the number of clinical testing requisitions declined by 7.3% during this same …

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Joint Venture Launches Molecular Pathology Lab

CEO SUMMARY: As genomic medicine advances, researchers into various diseases quickly recognize the need to incorporate molecular pathologists onto their teams. In Grand Rapids, Michigan, a large integrated health system and a private research institute have come together to jointly fund a state-of-the-art molecular pathology laboratory. The twin goals are to advance research and create …

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Why Labs Will Increase their Use of Middleware and Informatics

“Across the globe, laboratories face similar and significant challenges in how they use information technology and middleware to solve problems.” —Jacques Baudin, Executive Vice President, Technidata America Medical Software CEO SUMMARY: Middleware seems to be all the rage across the laboratory industry these days. Many lab organizations now use software provided by multiple vendors. One …

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Is There A Power Shift in Pathology?

SINCE THE END OF WORLD WAR II, the dominant practice model for the pathology profession has been the private group practice. Outside of academia and a few other settings, the vast majority of pathologists practiced laboratory medicine as physician-partners in a medical group. During this same period, the pathology profession’s major defender was the College …

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Quest Bites: Will Pay $2 Billion for AmeriPath

CEO SUMMARY: From its inception in the mid-1990s as a pathology physician practice management (PPM) company, AmeriPath was a business that its investors created specifically to be sold. Now Quest Diagnostics Incorporated is stepping up to pay a princely ransom of $2 billion to make AmeriPath’s ultimate destiny become a reality. However, after the marriage, …

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FDA Sends Warning Letter to Abbott Laboratories

CEO SUMMARY: On March 13, 2007, the Food and Drug Administration sent a warning letter to Abbott Laboratories’ Chairman and CEO, Miles D. White. The letter identified nine quality system violations and requested a satisfactory response by August 15, 2007. The warning letter is based on deficiencies identified by FDA inspectors at Abbott’s manufacturing facility …

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Bringing You the REAL Story behind the Story!

HOW MUCH DO YOU TRUST THE NEWSPAPERS AND OTHER MEDIA you read to give you the right story, with the right analysis? If you are like me, you are regularly disappointed that the nation’s journalists are too quick to report the obvious—while often missing the important nuances that bring out the true dimensions of the …

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Lots of IVD Acquisitions as Buyers Spend Money

CEO SUMMARY: Biggest deal in recent weeks was the $1.55 billion Beckman Coulter paid to acquire BioSite and its Triage BNP test. But the most interesting news may be the entry of 3M Corporation into clinical diagnostics, based on its acquisition of Acolyte Biomedica Ltd., a company which offers a five-hour rapid culture-based MRSA test. …

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Implementation Date Passes on Medicare Competitive Bid Project

YESTERDAY, APRIL 1, WAS THE DAY that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) was scheduled to implement the first sites for the Medicare Clinical Laboratory Services Competitive Bidding Demonstration project. It was good news for the laboratory industry that the day passed with no action on this issue, says Alan Mertz, President of the …

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Will OIG Reconsider Policy on Discriminatory Pricing?

HEIGHTENED COMPETITION in recent months for exclusive managed care contracts between the two blood brothers may trigger the law of unintended consequences. One such consequence could be renewed interest by Medicare regulators in what they call “discriminatory billing.” “In 2003, the federal Office of the Inspector General (OIG) issued a draft statement on discriminatory billing,” …

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