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DARK Daily Laboratory and Pathology News

DARK Daily is an e-briefing service providing up-to-the minute news of relevance for anyone working in diagnostic medicine, from clinical laboratories and pathology groups to lab industry suppliers and diagnostic technology companies. DARK Daily is part of The Dark Intelligence Group, Inc. and is dedicated to bringing useful business and management intelligence to laboratory managers, pathologists and diagnostic executives. Our recognized expertise in the strategic direction of laboratory medicine and the management of laboratories is available through DARK Daily, The Dark Report, free White Papers, Lab Resource Directory, the Executive War College on Laboratory and Pathology Management, Lab Quality Confab, and strategic consulting services.

Latest E-Briefings

Attention Anatomic Pathologists: Do You Know Medicare Is Prepared to Change How You Are Paid, Beginning on January 1, 2017?

Because of MIPS (a section of Medicare’s MACRA law), in coming years pathologists who participate will receive a bonus of as much as 9%, while those who do not participate will be penalizing up to 9%

If you are an anatomic pathologist, are you prepared to be paid more by Medicare starting on January 1, 2017? Do you and your pathology practice administrator know that, if you and your pathology group do nothing in 2017, Medicare could pay you significantly less in 2019 and the years beyond?

Answer no to either question and you have money at risk. In 2017, Medicare introduces a new payment program called the Merit-based Incentive Performance System (MIPS). This was authorized as part of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA), which was passed in 2015. continue reading

University Westminster Study Reveals That High-powered Hand Dryers Could Be Less Hygienic than Low-powered Dryers and Paper Towels

High-powered hand dryers, like the ones used in public restrooms, are the latest pawns in the relentless pursuit to repulse individuals fixated on cleanliness

For decades, microbiologists have regularly fanned out in hospitals and swabbed the hands of doctors, nurses, and staff, to demonstrate how often infectious agents get passed on to patients through interactions with their caregivers (due to lack of proper handwashing procedures prior to entering a patient’s hospital room, for example). One thing that was a regular on these fishing expeditions was to swab the ties worn by physicians and report on the interesting and disturbing array of infectious agents that were found.

Well, the microbiologists are at it again! After studying hand drying techniques, researchers at The University of Westminster in London determined that high-powered jet air dryers can act like “virus hand grenades.” continue reading

Medical Laboratories and Pathology Groups Outpacing Hospital Administrators on Overcoming the Data Challenges of Precision and Personalized Medicine

Powered by massive data sets, precision medicine is unlocking new insight into the treatment of diseases and conditions. At the same time, pathology groups and medical laboratories are leading the way to creating the storage solutions, analytic tools, and networks that will power tomorrow’s advances in precision medicine

There is exponential growth in the amount of data generated at medical laboratories, pathology groups, and hospital diagnostic facilities. As gene sequencing technologies and tools continue to decrease in price but increase in both speed and accessibility, the volume of data will grow further still.

This has major implications for the field of precision medicine. In order for physicians, hospitals, and clinical laboratories to move forward with precision medicine, to advance, it will be essential that they have sophisticated capabilities in data handling, storage, and analysis.

Yet, hospitals wanting to do more with precision medicine might not be the providers that unravel the technicalities of harnessing this new pool of big data. Pathology groups and medical laboratories are already familiar with the challenges of managing complex data, such as that created by genome sequencing and molecular diagnostic assays. As they continue to bolster their information technology (IT) staffing and infrastructure, these labs are positioned to be the keepers for much of the data driving new medical developments. continue reading

New Vaccine in Development at University of Buffalo Could Eradicate Pneumonia and Prevent the Deaths of Nearly One Million Children Under Five Worldwide Each Year

New vaccine has potential to reduce volume of clinical laboratory testing for bacterial and viral infections

By now, nearly all pathologists and clinical laboratory scientists acknowledge that advances in molecular diagnostics and genetic testing are contributing to significant improvements in patient care. Now comes news of a comparable breakthrough in another field of medicine with the potential to protect many individuals from pneumonia and similar infectious diseases.

A new way to develop vaccines made the news recently. Researchers at the University of Buffalo (UB) in New York have found a new way to reduce infections of specific and widespread Streptococcus pneumoniae (pneumococcus) diseases.

This cutting-edge pneumococcal vaccine allows Streptococcus pneumoniae to colonize and live inside the body as long as there is no risk to the host. When a threat is detected, the vaccine establishes an immune system response to annihilate the disease-causing bacteria. continue reading

Continuing Popularity of Employer Medical Clinics Brings New Opportunities for Medical Laboratory Outreach

As the number of on-site and near-site clinics grow, medical laboratories and pathologists could find unique opportunities to bridge the information gap between traditional health systems and new employer-based offerings

Employers have a big stake in lowering the cost of healthcare. That is one reason why more employers are incorporating employee wellness programs into their health benefit offerings. This is a favorable trend for medical laboratories, because such wellness programs often incorporate clinical laboratory tests as benchmarks from which employees can monitor their progress.

In 2013, Dark Daily reported on the increase in employee wellness programs across corporations. Medical laboratories and pathology groups found new opportunities to help with wellness monitoring, screening, and helping individuals through medical consultations.

Three years later, this trend continues to evolve and grow. Today, employers are going beyond simple wellness programs, creating on-site or near-site clinics to save their employees a trip to their local doctor, urgent care, or hospital. continue reading

Daily E-Briefings

DARK Daily

DARK Daily is a free e-briefing service that provides one short, easy-to-read news item every weekday, highlighting noteworthy developments in the clinical laboratory industry. First alerts to important news events, incisive assessment of best-practice breakthroughs, and strategic insights on important trends make these e-briefings timely and invaluable. Sign up for the DARK Daily today and receive the special report Trends In Clinical Pathology Laboratory Management free.

The Dark Report

Since its founding in 1995, The Dark Report has been the laboratory industry’s most reliable source for useful business intelligence and innovations in the management of clinical laboratories and pathology group practices. Widely-read and much discussed, The Dark Report is respected as a source of knowledge and information that allows lab administrators, pathologists, and industry executives to be first to learn about the latest facts and trends that affect medical laboratories of all kinds.

Professional Services

Strategic Consulting

With a demonstrated track record of success, Robert Michel and the team at The Dark Intelligence Group, Inc. deliver strategic insight and market analysis that directly leads to increased revenues, improved profitability, and operational excellence. Having continuously worked with and visited laboratories, pathology groups, and lab industry vendors for more than 12 years, Robert Michel brings a unique set of skills and experience to any strategic challenge or opportunity.

Meeting Facilitation

Energize your next public meeting, strategic retreat, or corporate event. Widely-recognized and often asked back for a second and third year, Robert Michel has a recognized ability to help audiences get more from the speakers and advance their knowledge and understanding about key trends and management innovations. One- and two-day management retreats are a specialty.

Public Presentations

For a dynamic and knowledgeable public speaker to turbo-charge your next meeting, contact The Dark Intelligence Group. When it comes to management of clinical laboratories and pathology group practices, Robert Michel and his colleagues are consistently ranked among the industry’s keenest minds.

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