Don't look for the analysts at JPMorgan to give the slumping shares of Vanguard Health Systems a boost: The firm has lowered its price target for the Nashville-based hospital operator to $13 from $15. Vanguard (Ticker: VHS) has slid from more than $17 to about $12 in the past two months.
Wayne Smith, chairman, president and CEO of Community Health Systems, says his team's fledgling collaboration with The Cleveland Clinic appears to be giving it a boost in the merger market. Speaking to Reuters as part of a story on the rising importance of academic partnerships — Williamson County neighbor LifePoint Hospitals is building a solid track record with its Duke LifePoint joint venture — Smith said CHS has been approached by a number of on-the-block hospitals since announcing the Cleveland Clinic partnership two months ago.
East Tennessee's Wellmont Health System has committed to expanding its use of M*Modal's clinical documentation services. Wellmont — which runs seven hospitals, two trauma centers and a network of ambulatory care facilities — has been using M*Modal's transcription services for four years and will now add speech recognition, workflow and other offerings to its tab. The deal makes Franklin-based M*Modal the network's only clinical documentation services provider.
Looks like the leaders of Vanguard Health Systems will continue to have the same number of big rivals in Detroit after the Henry Ford and Beaumont hospital systems called off an ambitious merger plan this week. Combined, the two organizations run eight hospitals that posted a 2012 profit of $162 million on $6.6 billion in revenues. Vanguard's Detroit Medical Center organization comprises nine hospitals that posted 2012 revenues of almost $2 billion. Shares of Vanguard (Ticker: VHS) are up about 2 percent this morning and are flat for the year.
Vanderbilt University is looking for children between the ages of 18 months and five years to participate in a nationwide autism study to help doctors identify the neurological disorder as early as possible.
“While children can exhibit symptoms of autism spectrum disorders before 18 months, the current average age of diagnosis is 4.5 years — well past the age where behavioral therapies can begin,” according to a statement.
The Massachusetts-based SynapDx Corporation, an autism laboratory services company, will conduct the 660-child study. In addition to Vanderbilt, 20 research sites are participating, including Boston Children’s Hospital, Mount Sinai Medical Center, Nationwide Children’s Hospital and UC Davis MIND Institute, among others.
“Treatment for autism is most effective when the disorder is identified as early as possible, but it is often difficult for families and physicians to distinguish the early signs of ASD that should lead to a full evaluation,” said Vanderbilt's Dr. Jeremy Veenstra-VanderWeele.
For more information, see the video linked here.
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