As healthcare becomes a global business, laboratory vendors from overseas are casting an envious eye on the market in the United States. After all, it is the world’s biggest and richest healthcare market, with more than $2 trillion in spending. Better yet, because healthcare in this country is organized around multiple payers and private providers, it provides competitive opportunities that don’t exist in many countries with single-payer health systems.
Dark Daily has learned of a laboratory information system (LIS) company in the European Union that is exploring how to enter the LIS market here in the United States and in selected Pacific Rim countries. This LIS vendor claims an 80% domestic share in LIS in its home country.
Like most competitive LIS products currently sold in the United States, this LIS offers web-based user interfaces that allow physicians to order tests and receive test results. The LIS is designed to integrate easily with other information systems such as Hospital Information Systems (HIS). The company also offers real time quality control systems for clinical laboratories and interface products that connect various laboratory analyzers and middleware to LIS. Because this LIS is built on Web-based modern architecture, the company believes this LIS can compete effectively against LIS products currently sold in the United States, many of which utilize older technologies.
One interesting feature that could help it compete in this country is that the LIS is designed to fully utilize Intersystem Cache programming language and Ensemble platforms. The Intersystem Caché product is a “high-performance object database that runs SQL five times faster than relational databases. Caché enables rapid Web application development, extraordinary transaction processing speed, massive scalability, and real-time queries against transactional data-with minimal maintenance and hardware requirements.” Among other benefits, it means this LIS has the capability to allow laboratory users to data mine laboratory test results and provide enriched sets of laboratory test data to client physicians and payers.
The LIS company recognizes that the LIS market for large hospitals is mature and very competitive. Its business plan would be to serve the medium to small clinical laboratory segments. In particular, it sees opportunity in providing LIS capabilities to molecular and genetic testing laboratories. Another market appeal may be the company’s unique transaction-based pricing module.
A team of MBA students at the Anderson School at UCLA is conducting a survey to gather opinions from laboratory administrators, pathologists and managers about the use of information technology in laboratory medicine. Dark Daily has agreed to alert our subscribers and readers to this survey.
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In the meantime, Dark Daily will do its best to track downstream developments with this company and its final plans to introduce its LIS into the United States.
Your Dark Daily Editor,
Robert L. Michel