September 7, 2021 Intelligence: Late-Breaking Lab News

New diagnoses of cancer in the United States fell by almost 30% in the early months of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. That’s one conclusion in a paper authored by Quest Diagnostics and published on Aug. 31, in JAMA Network Open. Quest looked at the new diagnoses of eight common types of cancer during four periods:

• Prepandemic period. January 2019 to February 2020 was baseline.

• Period 1: March 2020 through May 2020 showed a decrease of 29.8% in new cancer diagnoses. 

• Period 2: June to October 2020 showed a decrease of 9.6% in cancer diagnoses.

• Period 3: November 2020 to March 2021 showed a decrease of 19.1% in new cancer diagnoses.

MORE ON: Decrease in New Cancer Diagnoses

A total of 799,496 new diagnoses of cancer were made between January 2019 and March 2021. The eight cancer types covered in the Quest study were: breast, colorectal, lung, pancreatic, cervical, gastric, esophageal, and prostate. The study authors called the decrease in new diagnosed cancer cases following the onset of the pandemic “concerning” and said that “many cancers may remain undiagnosed.” They added that “the impact of delayed diagnosis may vary with the type of cancer and the extent of delay but could lead to presentation at more advanced stages, with potentially poorer clinical outcomes. Our findings call for planning to address the consequences of delayed diagnoses, including strengthened clinical telehealth offerings supporting patient-clinician interactions.”


For the twelfth time, San Diego-based XIFIN was named to Inc. magazine’s annual list of the 5,000 fastest growing companies in America. XIFIN noted that other 12-time honorees on this list include Intuit, Microsoft, and Oracle. In a press release, XIFIN said it grew 60% in the past three years. XIFIN describes itself as providing “cloud-based revenue cycle management, healthcare informations, and laboratory information systems” for diagnostic providers. 


Randy Pritchard was appointed as CEO and a board member by Pillar Biosciences of Natick, Mass. He formerly worked at Roche Diagnostics, ICOS Corporation, and GlaxoSmithKline.

• Premier Medical Laborarory Services of Greenville, S.C., announced that Brian Krueger, PhD, was its new Chief Scientific Officer. Krueger came from Labcorp and previously worked at Columbia University Medical Center.

That’s all the insider intelligence for this report. Look for the next briefing on Monday, September 27, 2021.



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