A Medical Device Daily

Tenet Healthcare (Dallas) reported that one of its subsidiaries, Tenet Physicians, completed a national agreement with Aetna (Hartford, Connecticut) that covers physicians employed by various Tenet subsidiaries.

Tenet Physicians contracts nationally with health plans on behalf of these 400 employed physicians.

The agreement provides consistent contract terms and facilitates the participation of physicians who are employed by Tenet subsidiaries in Aetna's provider networks. Tenet and Aetna also are engaged in a joint, collaborative effort to enhance the credentialing process for these employed physicians. The physicians represented by Tenet Physicians include traditional primary care specialties (family practice, internal medicine, obstetrics/gynecology and pediatrics), as well as medical and surgical specialties.

"The agreement between Tenet Physicians Inc. and Aetna represents the next logical step in our managed care strategy as it relates to employed physicians," said Stephen Newman, MD, Tenet's chief operating officer. "By contracting nationally on behalf of our employed physicians we can help ensure that they are fully represented on reasonable terms in the same managed care provider agreements as our hospitals."

Paul Marchetti, head of Aetna's National Networks and Contracting Services, said, "Aetna wants it to be easy for physicians and hospitals to work with us. We are pleased to extend our relationship and look forward to continued collaboration with Tenet in order to provide our members access to high quality, cost-effective healthcare."

In other agreements/contracts news:

• MMR Information Systems (Los Angeles), which through its wholly-owned operating subsidiary, MyMedicalRecords, provides consumer-controlled personal health records (PHRs) and electronic safe deposit box storage solutions, has entered into an agreement with The Latino Coalition (Washington) to offer its PHR individual and employer coalition members in both English and Spanish.

The employer program will enable member businesses to offer the MyMedicalRecords PHR as an employee benefit to groups of 10 employees or more on a similar basis to companies with groups of 1,000 employees or more. This program enables MMR to tap into a market previously underserved by other PHR providers.

• Agilent Technologies (Santa Clara, California) reported its support of prostate cancer research by the University of Michigan's Center for Translational Pathology (MCTP; Ann Arbor) through a grant of instruments and funding. The goal is to accelerate research to defeat the disease using a multidisciplinary systems biology approach.

Agilent is contributing a 1200 Series liquid chromatography (LC) system to be used to separate metabolites from human plasma, and a 1200 Series Rapid Resolution LC coupled to a 6530 Accurate Mass quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometer for the identification of those metabolites.

• Premier Purchasing Partners (San Diego) reported new agreements for surgical hand preps have been awarded to Cardinal Health (Dublin, Ohio), Gojo Industries (Akron, Ohio), 3M Company (St. Paul, Minnesota), Ecolab (also St. Paul) and Medline Industries (Mundelein, Illinois). Effective May 1, the 36-month agreements are available to acute care and continuum of care members of the Premier healthcare alliance.

Premier also signed new agreements for gas plasma sterilization with Johnson & Johnson Health Care Systems (Piscataway, New Jersey) and Steris (Mentor, Ohio).

Effective March 1, the Johnson & Johnson agreement is available to acute-care facilities and surgery centers, and the Steris agreement is available to acute- and continuum-of-care members of the Premier healthcare alliance.

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