Company news

March 17, 2010

What would you do with $10 million? Indiana Health Information Technology Inc. wants to spend it to link five medical records exchanges that operate separately around the state. The statewide organization received the money from programs created by the federal stimulus bill. The group will link existing exchanges operated in and around Indianapolis, Bloomington, Cincinnati, Fort Wayne and South Bend.

What’s this? A health insurance company trying to compete against Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in central Indiana? Consumer Life Insurance Co., a subsidiary of Medical Mutual of Ohio, has opened an office in Carmel with intentions to sell group and individual policies. Consumers Life, which operates primarily in southern and northeastern Indiana, has been expanding its network of doctors and hospitals in an attempt to reach statewide. The company has negotiated rates with 44 hospitals and 5,000 physicians, and now employs 13 at its Carmel office, with plans to add more. It intends to extend its SuperMed provider network statewide by the end of 2010.

Attaboy, here’s another contract. The Indiana State Department of Health awarded a $434,000 contract to the University of Indianapolis Center for Aging & Community to lead an initiative to reduce infections acquired in health care facilities. The new Indiana Healthcare Associated Infection Initiative will target such things as infections acquired from catheters that aren’t completely sterile or from side effects of antibiotic use. The 15-month Indiana program will begin in July and include at least 80 hospitals, nursing homes and home-health agencies. The latest initiative is modeled on the Indiana Pressure Ulcer Prevention Initiative, which UIndy also oversees under a state contract. The first round of the pressure ulcer initiative involved more than 160 hospitals, long-term care centers and home-health care providers and decreased the incidence of pressure ulcers by 30 percent.

St. Francis Hospital & Health Centers has acquired a six-doctor orthopedic surgery practice that operates in St. Francis’ Mooresville hospital. Joint Replacement Surgeons of Indiana fully integrated with St. Francis on Monday, the hospital system announced. The physician group will be called St. Francis Medical Group-Joint Replacement Surgeons. The doctors will continue working out of the St. Francis-Mooresville campus and the St. Vincent Indianapolis Hospital campus on West 86th Street.

Eli Lilly and Co. paid $50 million for exclusive rights from Acrux Ltd. to an underarm testosterone lotion called Axiron for men with limited sex drive due to low levels of the hormone, according to Bloomberg News. Indianapolis-based Lilly will also pay Acrux, based in West Melbourne, Australia, $3 million when manufacturing assets are transferred. Acrux may earn $87 million more if U.S. regulators approve the drug for sale, an additional $195 million in commercial milestone payments, and royalty payments on future sales.

Clarian Health is expanding its LifeLine Critical Care Transport service to Lafayette and Muncie, making its Clarian Arnett and Ball Memorial Hospital into regional centers for critical care. When the new cities come online in July, LifeLine will operate from six bases. Its other locations are in Indianapolis, Columbus, Kokomo and Terre Haute. Each LifeLine team includes a pilot, nurse, and a flight paramedic or respiratory therapist, depending on the needs of the patient being transported. LifeLine conducts more than 1,500 flights annually.

Indianapolis-based Nyhart Co. has acquired ASAP Flex Plans, a 7-year-old firm that helps smaller employers administer employee flexible spending accounts, health savings accounts, health reimbursement accounts and COBRA benefits. ASAP owner John Baird will join Nyhart as a consultant, spearheading a rollout of new flexible spending accounts by year’s end. ASAP’s 150 clients will be served under the Nyhart name.