Premier safety organization listed by AHRQ

The Premier Healthcare Alliance (San Diego) said that its component Patient Safety Organization (PSO), The Premier PSO, has been listed by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). In this role, the Premier PSO will voluntarily collect, report and share data on patient safety in order to improve outcomes and reduce harm.

"The Premier PSO will help create system-wide improvements consistent with an overall culture of quality and safety," said Richard Bankowitz, MD, Premier VP and medical director. "With our breadth of clinical data and trusted relationships with hospital members of our alliance, the Premier PSO will be in a unique position to track events, critically examine the causes of harm and freely share safety recommendations, protocols and best practices that benefit clinicians, hospitals and patients nationwide."

MDS approves renewal of shareholder plan

MDS (Toronto) said that shareholders approved the renewal of the company's shareholder rights plan at the company's 2009 annual and special meeting of shareholders. The principal purpose of plan continues to be to encourage a party who wishes to become the beneficial owner of 20% or more of the common shares of the company either to make a permitted bid (as defined in the plan) having terms and conditions designed to meet the objectives of the plan, or to negotiate the terms.

Innocoll says CollaRx testing is now underway

Innocoll (Ashburn, Virginia) said that the last patient has been dosed in the first of two ongoing U.S. Phase III clinical trials sponsored by its wholly owned subsidiary, Innocoll Technologies, to investigate CollaRx Gentamicin Surgical Implant for the prevention of surgical site infections.

The CollaRx is a fully biodegradable, leave-behind surgical implant impregnated with the broad spectrum aminoglycoside antibiotic, gentamicin. It is designed to provide a high concentration of gentamicin (which has a concentration-dependent mechanism of action) directly to the target tissue for localized action, while maintaining low systemic levels well below the toxicity threshold.

P4P survey released by Med-Vantage

Med-Vantage (San Francisco) has released initial findings from the fourth pay-for-performance (P4P) survey it has conducted since 2004, this one co-sponsored by the Leapfrog Group (Washington) and the Integrated Healthcare Association (Oakland, California). Participating Health Plans now report significant gains in achieving the programs goals of improving quality, efficiency, and in encouraging the adoption of technology.

In a keynote presentation at the national Pay-for Performance Summit in San Francisco, Peter Goldbach, MD, CEO of Med-Vantage, and Leah Binder, CEO of the Leapfrog Group, discussed the interim findings. To date the results represent more than 75 sponsors of 94 P4P programs for physicians and hospitals. The respondents comprise health plans and coalitions, and in total represent over 150 million health plan members.

Shareholders advised to reject Ramius proposals

Orthofix International (Boston) said that the independent proxy advisory firm Proxy Governance (Vienna, Virginia) has recommended that Orthofix shareholders reject each of the proposals put forth by dissident shareholder Ramius in their ongoing proxy contest.

In its report, Proxy Governance stated, "The problem with the dissident campaign is not an inability to evaluate what went wrong, but the profound absence of a plan to effect a credible recovery."

After hearing presentations from both Orthofix and Ramius on the activist hedge fund's proposal to remove four highly-qualified members of the Orthofix board of directors, Proxy governance concluded that the Board "has made credible changes in executive management which have resulted in demonstrable improvements in both the immediate financial results and the longer term market proposition of the troubled acquistion."

Datatrak working to comply with Nasdaq rules

Datatrak International (Cleveland) reported that a Nasdaq hearings panel has granted the company's request for continued listing on the Nasdaq Capital Market, subject to the condition that, on or before June 1, the company must evidence compliance with the minimum $2.5 million stockholders' equity requirement or one of the alternative criteria for continued listing.

The panel's determination follows a hearing in January 2009 at which the company presented its plan to regain compliance. The company is taking steps to comply with the terms of the panel's decision. However, in the event that the company is unable to demonstrate compliance with all requirements for continued listing by June 1, its common shares would be subject to delisting from the Nasdaq Capital Market.

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