Industry round-up: Bayer Healthcare, Franklin & Siemens, Thinking Systems, ZONARE

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Siemens has received approval from the European Commission to acquire the diagnostics division of Bayer Healthcare without restrictions. The approval follows earlier approval by U.S. antitrust authorities at the beginning of October. This follows the acquisition of the U.S. firm Diagnostic Products Corporation (DPC), which was completed at the end of July. The purchase price for Bayer Diagnostics is roughly EUR 4.2 billion. Upon completion of the Bayer acquisition, which is expected by early 2007, both companies will be merged and will operate as "Siemens Medical Solutions Diagnostics," an U.S.-based subsidiary and part of Siemens Medical Solutions. Prof. Dr. Erich R. Reinhardt, member of the managing board of Siemens AG and president and CEO of Siemens Medical Solutions stated that "This has paved the way for Siemens to create the world's first full-service diagnostics company." Siemens hopes the successful entry into the in-vitro diagnostics market will allow the company to combine the entire imaging diagnostics, laboratory diagnostics and clinical information technology value chain under one roof and offer its customized technologies to customers. "This will further improve the quality and efficiency of healthcare," Reinhardt said. It is expected that the acquisitions of Bayer Diagnostics and DPC (purchased in July for $1.86 billion) will make Siemens Medical Solutions second worldwide in the immunodiagnostics market.

Franklin & Seidelmann Subspecialty Radiology (F &S) has added four new radiologists to its lineup:
  • Jenny T. Bencardino, MD, is a musculoskeletal MRI specialist with extensive experience in sports medicine. Prior to joining F &S, Dr. Bencardino was the director of musculoskeletal MRI at Medical Arts Radiological Group, P.C., in Suffolk County, New York;
  • Guy Thompson Borders, MD, is currently a clinical assistant professor of radiology at the University of Arizona, and a neuroradiologist with a certificate of added qualifications;
  • Alan S. Diamond, MD, is a neuroradiologist with a certificate of added qualifications and also a diplomat of the American Board of Radiology;
  • Donna R. Roberts, MD, is a neuroradiologist currently serving as an adjunct assistant professor at the Medical University of South Carolina and the University of Texas.

F &S also launched the online version of its Lexicon, a tool developed for systematic evaluation of imaging studies designed to increase radiologists' productivity, speed report turnaround and ensure report consistency.

Thinking Systems released a new version of its ThinkingPACS that supports the new DICOM 3.0 2006 standard for color and grayscale presentation states, key objects and structured reporting. ThinkingPACS support a large variety of modalities, including PET-CT and SPECT-CT fusion, nuclear cardiology processing and analysis, general nuclear medicine processing and review, cardiac PET analysis, PET brain analysis, 3D/MPR, calcium scoring, cardiac CTA, cardiac catheterization and angiography, echocardiography, general ultrasound, orthopedic templating, mammography, and connectivity to modalities, in addition to the conventional radiological CT, MR, and CR/DR imaging functionalities.

Saint Joseph's Hospital, a cardiac and vascular hospital in the Southeast, has completed the installation of the ultrasound system from ZONARE Medical Systems. The facility debuted the system at the Dare to Care Screening early in October.