By Ron Shinkman, Editor, Laboratory Industry Report
Quest Diagnostics, which has been extending itself more into the operation of hospital laboratories in recent years, has just inked a deal to manage the labs owned by the largest hospital operator in its home state.
The Barnabas Health system, which operates hospitals in New Jersey, has hired Quest to manage many of its on-site laboratories, the two organizations announced earlier this week. Quest will manage Barnabas-owned labs at six different hospital sites, primarily in Northern New Jersey.
“Leading hospitals are increasingly focusing on their core business and turning to Quest to help them evaluate and execute their lab strategy so they can do what they do best—deliver great patient care,” said Quest Chief Executive Officer Steve Rusckowski in a statement. “This partnership follows a model for delivering high-value diagnostic information services for our nation’s cost-pressured health systems.”
According to Quest, the deal will allow Barnabas patients to access testing services at lower costs, as well as Quest’s online portal to check test results and data.
The transaction appears to be more interactive than prior Quest deals with hospital laboratory operators. Most of the prior deals involved Quest’s purchasing of hospital system lab outreach services. Such deals included the MemorialCare hospital system in Southern California and Hartford HealthCare in Connecticut.
“Our agreement with Quest enables us to offer patients a standardized level of care throughout our laboratories at all seven Barnabas Health hospitals,” said Barnabas CEO Barry H. Ostrowsky in a statement.
Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. Quest is expected to fully take over Barnabas’ lab operations by the middle of 2016.