“January 6, 1997 Intelligence: Late Breaking Lab News”

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Interesting bedfellows have come together in Pittsburgh. The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) and Quest Diagnostics Incorporated (formerly Corning Clinical Laboratories) announced an agreement to “explore joint ventures in laboratory testing, medical informatics and molecular diagnostics research.” This is early evidence that Quest seeks to diversify away from routine testing services.

Quest operates a sizeable regional laboratory in Pittsburgh. With the recent demise of Reference Laboratory Alliance (RLA), the 40 hospital laboratory network, Quest’s partnership with the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center must also be viewed as a strategic marketing move. UPMC’s growing hospital network represents a significant volume of lab tests that Quest would like to access.

Wayne Patterson, Ph.D. will join the Board of Directors for OncorMed, Inc. Gaithersberg, Maryland. Patterson, currently President of Green Mountain Associates in Parker, Colorado, was President of Nichols Institute Reference Laboratories from 1984 to 1989, and President of Nichols Institute Laboratories from 1989 to 1991. OncorMed specializes in genetic testing and cancer detection services.


Knowledgeable observers are speculating about the impact of the merger between Sunquest Information Systems, Inc. and Antrim Corporation. Antrim is a major player in providing commercial laboratories with laboratory information systems. Sunquest is strong in hospital laboratory information systems. Sunquest sees Antrim’s products as complementary with their existing software.

Laboratory Corporation of America had to turn to Roche Holding Ltd for assistance in its cash crunch. A subsidiary of Roche will lend $187 million to Lab Corp. The funds will be used to pay off the money owed to the federal government as a result of the Medicare billing practices settlement announced in November.

Northern Diagnostic Laboratories in Portland, Maine starts 1997 with a new President. Stan Schofield will begin duties there in January. Schofield is a Past President of the Clinical Laboratory Management Association and was most recently Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Cedars-Sinai Laboratory Services, a joint venture in Los Angeles between Cedars-Sinai and Dynacare.


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