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January 6, 2010
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Whew! A contract dispute that almost kicked seven central Indiana hospitals out of the network of Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield was averted at the last minute last week. On Dec. 30, Anthem released a “News Flash” saying that its customers no longer would receive negotiated discounts at Hancock Regional, Hendricks Regional, Henry County, Morgan, Riverview, Westview and Witham hospitals, beginning the next day. The hospitals are part of Indianapolis-based Suburban Health Organization. But by 4 p.m. the same day, the two sides came to terms.

What Dow AgroSciences has done with corn, it’s now trying to do with cotton. The Indianapolis-based company has licensed genetically engineered cotton traits from Switzerland-based Syngenta AG. Dow Agro will combine Syngenta's traits with cotton traits it developed. In 2012, Dow Agro expects to launch cotton seeds stacked with the traits to better protect against cotton pests. Dow Agro, a subsidiary of Michigan-based Dow Chemical Co., developed corn seed with eight genetically engineered traits following a licensing deal with St. Louis-based Monsanto Co. Dow Agro and Syngenta did not disclose financial terms of their deal.

St. Francis Hospital and Health Centers has sued three OrthoIndy physicians over the group's new $20 million outpatient surgery center scheduled to open in Greenwood next year. The complaint alleges the new facility breaches an earlier partnership between the two health care providers. According to St. Francis’ civil complaint, filed Dec. 18 in Hamilton County Superior Court, St. Francis and an OrthoIndy affiliate agreed in 2001 to become equal partners in another facility—the Indiana Orthopaedic Surgery Center at 5255 E. Stop 11 Road on the St. Francis campus on the south side. But in December 2008, OrthoIndy announced it had purchased property four miles from the Indiana Orthopaedic Surgery Center and planned to construct a competing facility there. An attorney for the OrthoIndy physicians said St. Francis’ lawsuit has no merit.

When production at Tippecanoe Laboratories in Lafayette started today at 9:30 a.m., it officially launched a new era for the drugmaking plant. Germany-based Evonik Industries AG is now operating the plant after acquiring it from Indianapolis-based Eli Lilly and Co. Lilly sold the plant as part of $1 billion in operating cuts it wants to achieve by the end of 2011. Lilly signed a nine-year contract for Evonik to supply it with the materials made at the Lafayette plant. Gov. Mitch Daniels attended the start of production this morning.

Community Health Network’s philanthropic foundation received $1 million in cash from John W. “Jack” Heiney, a retired president and CEO of Evansville-based Indiana Gas Co. Heiney’s gift, made in honor of his late wife Betty, will be used to fund outreach, wellness and prevention programs, as well as improve Community’s facilities and employees.

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