Month: May 2013

Dark Daily

May 28, 2013 “Intelligence: Late Breaking Lab News””

Globalization of laboratory medicine continues to move forward. Two recent examples illustrate this trend. Earlier this month, the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) announced that it had entered into an agreement with the Citizens Hospital of Hyderabad, India, to form a clinical pathology laboratory in that city. The laboratory will be located on the …

May 28, 2013 “Intelligence: Late Breaking Lab News”” Read More »

Aetna To Lower Lab Test Prices, New Fees Are Effective on July 1

IN RECENT MONTHS, labs are reporting the receipt of letters from Aetna, Inc., announcing that it will pay dramatically less than Medicare prices for many key lab tests. Aetna said that these lower prices will take effect on July 1, 2013. Three examples illustrate the deep fee cuts that Aetna is attempting to push onto …

Aetna To Lower Lab Test Prices, New Fees Are Effective on July 1 Read More »

Financial Hurricane Hits Entire Lab Testing Industry

FOR ABOUT 18 MONTHS NOW, THE ENTIRE LABORATORY TESTING INDUSTRY has been hit by an ongoing series of painful cuts to lab test fees and announcements of more restrictive coverage guidelines. Even today, there is additional news of rock bottom prices to share with you. In this issue, you’ll read about Aetna, Inc.’s latest strategy …

Financial Hurricane Hits Entire Lab Testing Industry Read More »

Much Uncertainty About Pay for Molecular Codes

CEO SUMMARY: Having gone unpaid since January 1 for the 114 new molecular CPT codes, many clinical labs and pathology groups have stopped running these tests or laid off staff. Some are considering closing their doors. Evidence indicates that certain Medicare contractors are deciding that some molecular tests are not medically necessary. Medicare officials launched …

Much Uncertainty About Pay for Molecular Codes Read More »

Health Insurers See Big Increase in Lab Utilization

CEO SUMMARY: In a recent public workshop, managed care executives revealed that the annual cost of outpatient laboratory testing is increasing at twice the rate of all other medical services. One big driver in the increased spending on lab testing is increased utilization of lab tests by physicians—particularly expensive molecular diagnostic assays and genetic tests. …

Health Insurers See Big Increase in Lab Utilization Read More »

Why One Molecular Diagnostics Company Closed Its Doors

CEO SUMMARY: When executives closed the doors of Pathwork Diagnostics last month, the simple explanation was that reimbursement for its proprietary molecular diagnostic test was inadequate. Indeed, that was part of the story. But other factors played significant roles in impeding growth at this lab company. Here is an inside look at six factors which …

Why One Molecular Diagnostics Company Closed Its Doors Read More »

Unpaid for Molecular Tests, Some Labs Are Closing

THERE IS GREAT FRUSTRATION ACROSS THE LABORATORY MEDICINE PROFESSION on the subject of getting paid for claims covered by the new Tier I and Tier II molecular test CPT codes. We are now in the fifth month of the year and pathologists are still waiting for an acceptable resolution to this situation. Last week in …

Unpaid for Molecular Tests, Some Labs Are Closing Read More »

Executive War College Sessions Center Upon Three Trends

CEO SUMMARY: There was an interesting blend of anxiety and optimism as a record crowd gathered in New Orleans last week for the 18th annual Executive War College on Laboratory and Pathology Management. The anxiety was rooted in the shrinking prices paid by payers for lab testing services. The optimism was based on recognition that …

Executive War College Sessions Center Upon Three Trends Read More »

Dartmouth Builds New Lab to Serve Growth in Testing

CEO SUMMARY: Demand for specialized reference and esoteric testing is so robust at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center in New Hampshire that the academic center is building an expanded laboratory facility to accommodate the increased volume of tests it handles each year. A favorable trend supporting these developments is the steady decline in the cost of …

Dartmouth Builds New Lab to Serve Growth in Testing Read More »

Standard Bar Code Labels Can Reduce Lab Errors

CEO SUMMARY: Standardization of bar code labels is a concept whose time has come. After implementing CLSI standard AUTO12-A, first-mover clinical labs report fewer specimen identification errors, a reduction of costs associated with specimen handling errors, and a boost in lab productivity. Moreover, accrediting bodies such as The Joint Commission and the College of American …

Standard Bar Code Labels Can Reduce Lab Errors Read More »