Medical

Novel MRI technique could offer new avenue for Alzheimer’s, stroke risk assessment

A new MRI scanning technique being investigated in Toronto could one day help physicians identify patients on the path to developing Alzheimer’s disease, and do so at a cost far less than molecular imaging of amyloid deposits, according to an in-depth profile of the project published by theToronto Star.

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Before the Deluge: What Changing Demographics Mean for Imaging

Age catches up with us all at some point. For the Baby Boomers, that point is arriving year after year, with 10,000 Americans turning 65 every day from now until 2030. It’s no secret our elderly population will grow to levels never before seen in the U.S. Meanwhile, the obesity epidemic rages on and other macroeconomic forces, such as the recovering economy and widespread health policy reforms, also promise to change the equation in healthcare. Are we prepared?

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SHINE Medical Technologies To Supply Moly-99 To GE Healthcare

SHINE Medical Technologies, Inc. (SHINE), a Wisconsin-based company dedicated to being the world leader in safe, clean, affordable production of medical isotopes, announced today that it has entered into a strategic long-term supply agreement with GE Healthcare, a division of the General Electric Company, for supply of molybdenum-99 (moly-99). This is the first announcement of a major supply agreement with a U.S. based producer of moly-99. Moly-99 decays into the diagnostic imaging agent technetium-99m (Tc-99m).  Tc‑99m’s extraordinary attributes make it the most commonly-used medical isotope on the planet (used in over 40 million medical imaging procedures per year). Under the terms of the supply agreement, SHINE will provide moly-99 to GE Healthcare on a regular basis once its facility becomes operational.

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More Work Needed for CT Colonography Reimbursement

Continued scientific publications, legislative efforts, and public education about the value of CT colonography (CTC) are vital for achieving acceptance and reimbursement of the screening nationally, according to an article published in the December 2013 issue of the Journal of the American College of Radiology.

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Medical Device Makers Look East

The once U.S.-centric device business is going global. Startups are forming worldwide, and companies—even American ones—are thinking more about how to innovate with non-Western patients in mind. “Traditionally, people have been very focused on the U.S. market, but now making sure a device is efficient enough to be sold in places like India and China is critical,” Medved says. “If you build it for the U.S. market [only], someone will ambush with a more efficient product for emerging markets.”

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Global Medical Isotope Shortage Follows S. Africa Plant Leak

A leak at a South African Nuclear Energy Corp. plant this month has caused a global shortfall in the supply of isotopes used in millions of medical procedures every year, including treatment and diagnosis of cancer.

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EU Committee Backs Tougher, U.S.-style Device Approval System

A European Parliament committee finally voted on proposed reforms to the region’s medical device regulatory process. Industry insiders were likely apoplectic about the outcome: The group came out heavily on the side of a U.S.-style premarket approval system for high-risk devices.

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New Study Shows Medical Device Prices Have Dropped Significantly Since 2007

Among the AdvaMed study’s conclusions: Average inflation-adjusted prices for the 7 biggest medical device categories dropped from 2007 through 2011. The trend has taken place as hospitals have increasingly turned to tighter spending controls. Medical device prices continue at less than 50% of the pace of inflation in the overall U.S. economy.

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With ‘Helium Cliff’ Dodged, More Challenging Discussions Await

On September 19th, the U.S. Senate passed an amended version of the Responsible Helium Administration and Stewardship Act, or HR 527, which was approved by the House of Representatives earlier this year. It still needs to be officially signed into law, but this is a major step to averting a helium shortage that had been looming for months.

Read about it here.

Hospitals Face Rough Ride Under Reform But Device Makers may Fare Worse

The financial outlook for hospitals under healthcare reform initially appears rocky but may perk up with time. Medical devices makers, on the other hand, should brace for difficulties, according to a report published July 17 by Moody’s Investors Service.

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