Agilent puts POC on fast track with new industry consortium; Clinipad faces FDA recall for bad wrapping; World Tour: Lebanon

Agilent technologies puts POC on fast track with new industry consortium

Agilent Technologies Inc. has established the Connectivity Industry Consortium (CIC), a new standards effort to improve communications between point-of-care testing devices. A statement issued by the 32-member industry group said it will work to “better connect handheld diagnostic devices to healthcare information systems and electronic medical records.”

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Core Competencies
Unlike its involvement in past standards groups, Agilent Technologies is only one of 11 Core Industry Members of the Connectivity Industry Consortium (CIC). The list of core members includes:

Agilent Technologies Inc. 
AVL Scientific Corp. 
Bayer Diagnostics
Instrumentation Laboratory 
Johnson & Johnson
Lifescan Inc.
Medical Automation Systems
Radiometer Medical A/S
Roche Diagnostics 
Sunquest Information Systems

Andover Working Group is history

Officials at Agilent Technologies confirmed that the Andover Working Group was disbanded. Its work was transferred to the HL7 standard organization for future development and implementation.

The Andover Working Group was a consortium of more than 140 companies that worked to create standardized medical device intercommunications, image transfer protocols and implementation of HL7 to assemble views of an electronic patient record.

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Clinipad faces FDA recall for bad wrapping
The FDA recalled prepackaged procedure kits and trays that contain sterile antiseptic skin preparations from Clinipad Corp. (Rocky Hill, Conn.) after Clinipad confirmed bacterial contamination in some lots of its sterile products. The bacteria can cause skin, wound or other infections.

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FDA busts reach record in 1999

FDA figures for the fiscal year ended Sept. 30, 1999, show the agency enforced more recalls and detentions of potentially hazardous products than ever before.

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Hill-Rom stays committed to its adopted WatchChild
It’s often said that children are the ones truly affected by a divorce. Sometimes that applies to the medical technology world as well.

Officials from Hill-Rom Co. Inc. (Batesville, Ind.) are trying to quell industry rumors and stated that Hill-Rom will remain committed to its WatchChild product despite the fact that sales and installation of the obstetrical data management system were voluntarily suspended due to quality systems concerns.

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Medical companies team up for purchasing simplicity

The as-yet-unnamed group will be an independent company with a dedicated management team and directors selected from among senior executives of its members.

The heavy hitters of healthcare came out of the woodwork in April to form and join online purchasing organizations.

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Tenet picks MasterPlan
Tenet Healthcare Corp. (Santa Barbara, Calif.) selected Masterplan (Chatsworth, Calif.) to handle CT and MRI maintenance services at its facilities.

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World Tour

Lebanon

In Lebanon, the regulation of medical devices is not a controversial issue — there is simply no regulation and there are no plans for regulation.

Bassam Tabshouri, director of the Medical Engineering Department at the American University of Beirut-Medical Center (AUBMC) calls the healthcare environment in Lebanon, “Totally free and uncontrolled.”

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Neoforma ends the bickering by acquiring Eclipsys
After all the harsh words between Eclipsys Corp. (Delray Beach, Fla.) and Shared Medical Systems (SMS of Malvern, Pa.), a dot-com came in and settled it all.

Eclipsys made an unsolicited $2 billion bid in March for much larger SMS, which SMS brushed off as an attempt by Eclipsys to ride SMS’ coattails. Eclipsys, in turn, filed a lawsuit against SMS challenging the continuing directors provision in SMS’ “poison pill rights plan.”

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CICcorp renews in Oklahoma

Asset management company CICcorp. (College Station, Texas) signed a “preferred status” agreement with the Oklahoma Community Healthcare Alliance (OCHA).

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Luxtec gets into fiber optic repair business
Luxtec Corp.’s (Worcester, Mass.) Fiber Imaging Technologies subsidiary has established a fiber optic cable and illuminated instrument repair and refurbishing business which will offer a flat-rate service on equipment from all manufacturers.

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U.S. Counseling names new account exec 

U.S. Counseling Services Inc. (Brookfield, Wis.) has a new account executive. Eric Krueger has signed on with the firm to cover Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia.

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