Issue: Volume X No. 3 - March 3, 2003

Integrity Remains a Valued Business Asset

LATELY I SEEM TO BE LIVING UP TO MY ROLE as the “crusty curmudgeon.” The opinions and commentaries I contributed to these pages in recent issues of THE DARK REPORT triggered a considerable number of letters and feedback from our clients and regular readers. In particular, my observations about “Why There’s Bad Blood Against the …

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Buyout of AmeriPath Riles Some Shareholders

CEO SUMMARY: Owners of the few remaining independent private laboratory companies closely watch prices paid by lab buyers. In the pending sale of AmeriPath to private equity investor Welsh, Carson, Anderson, & Stowe, dissenting shareholders disclosed several aspects of the valuation process. This information provides useful insights into the process of valuing laboratory companies. DISSENTING …

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“Where’s The Beef?” AP’s AWOL at AmeriPath

REMEMBER THAT FAMOUS TELEVISION commercial from Wendy’s burger restaurants? The elderly lady scrutinizes a big hamburger bun that’s obviously short on meat and asks the seminal question “Where’s the beef?” In 1984, it was a catch line that captured the American imagination and was repeated everywhere. More than 19 years have passed and people continue …

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Carolina Blood Bank, PSA, Carolinas Healthcare, Leapfrog Group, CMS

PATHOLOGY GROUP IN SALT LAKE CITY BECOMES PSA MEMBER UTAH IS THE NEWEST STATE to have a pathology group practice become part of Pathology Service Associates, LLC (PSA). Based in Salt Lake City, Utah Pathology Services, Inc. is the first PSA-affiliated practice in that state. Utah Pathology Services has 14 pathologists and serves three hospitals …

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Hospital Mergers Down For Fourth Straight Year

CEO SUMMARY: Changes in hospital ownership often drive laboratory restructuring projects. But hospital merger and acquisition activity has declined for four consecutive years. Consequently, comprehensive laboratory restructuring efforts have declined in parallel. Hospital M&A numbers for 2003 are predicted to remain at a low level. Meanwhile, cross-system laboratory ventures seem to be also languishing. FOR …

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Liquid Prep Testing Market Causing Much Aggravation

SEVERAL RECENT ISSUES of THE DARK REPORT addressed issues that resonated with our clients and regular readers. The mailbag has been plenty full of late. These responses are interesting in their own right. Among those with a point to make is Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings. It wanted to respond to a recent opinion and commentary …

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Lab Director Takes a Stand On Patented Genetic Testing

THIS LETTER APPEARED in the mailbag after our special intelligence briefing on how genetics will transform healthcare and before our look at how high-priced specialty esoteric testing is causing budget headaches for regional labs. (See TDRs, December 30, 2002 and January 20, 2003, respectively.) Financial Pinch In Detroit In Detroit, the 130 hospital laboratories participating …

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Quest Finally Owns Unilab, New Market Cycle To Begin

PERSISTENCE FINALLY PAID OFF for Quest Diagnostics Incorporated. On February 26, it took ownership of Unilab Corporation, capping almost 11 months of effort. In completing this acquisition, Quest Diagnostics completes the two blood brothers’ acquisition sweep of mid-sized public lab companies during 2002. The familiar names of American Medical Laboratories, Dynacare, DIANON Systems, and Unilab …

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“March 3, 2003 Intelligence: Late Breaking Lab News”

Not too many issues ago, THE DARK REPORT was bemoaning the fact that the pathology profession has yet to replace those pathologist-entrepreneurs of the 1970s and 1980s who built some of the largest laboratory companies still operating today. But that overlooks recognition to pathologist Tom Grogan, M.D., who is a founding partner of Ventana Medical …

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