News Business Sports Entertainment Life Obituaries Opinion
Jobs Homes Cars Classifieds Shopping
Local Bloggers Cheap Tech Eco-Confessions Faceoff Furst Draft Heard on the Street Med City Movie Guy Pulse on Health Political Party

Search PB Blogs

Loading

Categories

412 posts categorized "Health business"

April 08, 2014

Mayo Clinic's Nobel Prize work at heart of $5.6B drug deal

So Questcor Pharmaceuticals announced Monday that Ireland-based Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals is buying it for a whopping $5.6 BILLION.

A little research into Questcor shows that it has followed an interesting path starting with its $100,000 purchase of rights to H.P. Acthar Gel from Aventis in 2001. The FDA then approved labeling Acthar as "an orphan drug," which opened up the company's options for pricing Acthar.

The New York Times says the price per vial climbed from $40 to an incredible $28,000 within 10 years.

CortisoneA95D4FE2FBE5At the core of Questcor's story is one of Mayo Clinic's most famous research successes.

In 1948, Dr. Philip S. Hench and Dr. Edward C. Kendall were studying the effects of a hormone on inflammination related to rheumatoid arthritis. They had success with cortisone, but it was difficult to synthesize.

Hench then injected adrenocorticotropic hormone, or ACTH to cause the patient's body to produce their own cortisone and other steroid hormones. The ACTH came from pigs from Armour meatpacking.

In 1950, Hench and Kendall won the Nobel Pirze in medicine for their research. Unfortunately, they didn't patent it. The FDA approved H.P. Acthar Gel to treat a variety of diseases and conditions. It was then owned by the meatpacker Armour.

In recent years, Questcor has been criticized for its dramatic price hikes and for vauge allusions to "a secret sauce" in their drug that improves its effectiveness.

Some question if it is effective at all.

Mayo Clinic's Dr. Eric Matteson, the chairman of rheumatology, has been quoted about the use of Achtar in rheumatolgy.

• “Limited to no attractiveness in rheumatology”

• “Enthusiasm is low”

• "Very little if any role for an ACTH product in rheumotatic diseases, I don't see it."

April 03, 2014

Does Mayo Clinic have plans for Shoppes on Maine?

Mayo Clinic seems to be looking to south Rochester for a future project, even though there's no official word yet.

Tom Hexum, of Maine Street Development Co. of Rochester, filed a Land Development Application on March 11 for a 22,000-square-foot "commercial building with parking" at the corner of Canal Place Southeast and Maine Avenue Southeast. That puts the building near Fat Willy's Bar and Grill and across Maine Avenue from the commercial center anchored by Lowe's.

Mayo buildingThe proposed building would be situated on two acres and have 109 parking spaces. Plans call for a half circle drive in front for loading and unloading at the building's entrance, which would be covered with an 880-square-foot canopy.

Hexum and Maine Street have been the local driving force behind development in the Shoppes on Maine area from its start. Most of their previous projects had future tenants identified before any construction began. But this new development application doesn't name any tenant.

However, Mayo Clinic enters the picture when the application was studied by city staff. The Department of Planning and Zoning and the Department of Public Works describe the building as the "proposed Mayo Clinic facility" in letters on May 14 and May 24. Those letters denied the application until a variety of site-related issues are addressed.

Despite being named by city officials, Mayo Clinic would neither confirm nor deny any specific plans in the Shoppes on Maine area.

"We are exploring options to improve our ability to improve access to community care for our employees and those who depend on us for these services," said Rebecca Eisenman, of Mayo Clinic's Communications Dept. "Future options may include expansion of facilities and services in southeast Minnesota, but no specific details are available at this time."

While the first application for this building was denied, it seems likely that Rochester design firm Yaggy Colby will be able to address the issues and get the development approved.

We'll just need to watch how it plays out and listen to what Mayo Clinic has to say about it.

March 21, 2014

DMC origins stem from lunch chat six years ago

For the first part of two DMC sections, I chatted with Dr. Glenn Forbes, Bruce Fairchild, John Wade, Jeff Korsmo and Lisa Clarke about the evolution of the concept of the Destination Medical Center.

DMCMy article tracks the journey of the idea from a casual lunch conversation in March 2008 to DMC's appearance in the 2012 sales tax vote and the unveiling of the full concept in 2013.

Obviously, the idea of the City of Rochester and Mayo Clinic working from the playbook is not a novel idea in the Med City. Some at Mayo dismissed my use of this luncheon chat as a startng point. However, they weren't about to offer any better dates as begin DMC's genesis other than the formation of Mayo Clinic 250 years ago.

Unfortunately, the DMC section wasn't quite large enough to accomodate an article that tracked each milestone since 1889, so I just went with the March 2008 conversation.

Here's a little bit of what turned into a very lengthy article. Check out the rest in this weekend's DMC section.

-------------------------------

Destination Medical Center is such a common topic in Rochester today that it's hard to keep in mind that the concept has only been known publicly for just over a year.

But the concept that grew into the $6 billion DMC initiative appears to have started with a chat at a Virginia conference center about six years ago.

Flag01-bdyjpgThat conversation was in March 2008 at Mayo Clinic's National Symposium on Health Care Reform at Lansdowne Resort in Leesburg, Va. The place was bustling with national leaders in the health care business. Representatives of the presidential candidates were there, promoting their health-care reform plans.

But not everyone at the conference worked directly in health care. Mayo Clinic flew out two local business leaders — John Wade, then-president of the Rochester Area Chamber of Commerce, and Bruce Fairchild, then-regional director of Interstate Hotels in Rochester — as guests.

Since November 2007, Wade and Fairchild had been talking about developing a plan to bring the community and its largest employer into sync to serve more efficiently the thousands of people who stream into Rochester. While it wasn't a new idea, a move to formalize such a plan was gaining momentum. Amid the action at the symposium, the pair decided they should share their ideas with Mayo Clinic.

They asked to meet with Mayo Rochester CEO Dr. Glenn Forbes, without much expectation that he'd have time to meet.

"But true to form, Dr. Forbes took the time, and we had lunch together," Wade said in a recent interview. Forbes was Mayo Rochester CEO from 2006 to 2009, and "his very nature is to be collaborative," Wade said.

The three met in a restaurant at the Lansdowne conference center, and their lunch unexpectedly turned out to be a long one.

It started with the trio "blue sky, brainstorming ideas," said Fairchild, who now manages hotels in Texas. But the talk quickly picked up momentum.

"We were getting increasingly excited about the possibilities," said Forbes, who is now retired from Mayo Clinic. "The lunch went over several cups of coffee for about 2 1/2 hours."

March 18, 2014

Mayo Clinic's new full court press

Mayo Clinic is going beyond the role of sports trainer on the bench and is stepping onto center court with its latest business play.532836c8a1ddb.image

The Mayo Clinic name is now prominently emblazoned across the front of the jerseys of the Minnesota Lynx professional women's basketball team, part of a huge sponsorship deal announced Monday.

Mayo's name will appear above the player's number in the spot where the team name used to be located. Boost Mobile, which sponsors the entire league, has its logo below the number, as it did in previous years. The Lynx logo now appears as a small patch near the collar of the jersey.

No financial terms of the multiyear deal were released.

The Womens National Basketball Association began allowing "branded" or "marquee" jerseys in 2009. The Lynx are the sixth team to lock down such a sponsorship. In 2010, Microsoft’s Bing search engine paid more than $1 million to place its name on the WNBA jerseys of the Seattle Storm. People familiar with WNBA sponsorships estimated the Mayo Clinic deal is at least "seven figures."

TimberwolveLynxMayoLogosThe sponsorship is part of "a strategic collaboration" with the Lynx and the NBA's Minnesota Timberwolves that includes the development of a new training facility and sports medicine center to be called Mayo Clinic Square.

"This is another block in the relationship we're building," said  Dr. John Wald, Mayo Clinic's medical director for marketing and public affairs. "From our perspective, this is one of the key components in this relationship that allows us to move out into the Twin Cities, raise awareness and build more relationships."

The agreement also includes Mayo Clinic's name on the Lynx practice jerseys and signage at the basketball court. In 2015, Mayo Clinic will become the medical provider for the Lynx. TRIA Orthopaedic Center will continue to serve as the team's official medical team until then. TRIA also provides care for the Minnesota Vikings, Minnesota Wild and the Minnesota Twins.

Wald emphasized that the sponsorship displays Mayo Clinic's expertise in sports medicine and training, and the Lynx organization is a good fit with Mayo Clinic's values.

"We believe it was the right thing to do to put Mayo Clinic's name on those jerseys," Wald said.

Mayo Clinic is certainly not the first non-profit medical center to have such an arrangement with a professional sports team. However, none of the top four professional leagues — NFL, NBA, NHL and MLB — allow sponsors' names on game jerseys.

IEG, a leading sponsorship consulting firm, reported in 2013 that of all sponsorship deals made by hospitals, about 72 percent involved sports. About 12 percent were for arts/entertainment, and 8 percent were for "causes."

The Mayo Clinic-Lynx collaboration comes as the WNBA league hit its best game attendance and television ratings in team history at the end of the 2013 season.

The 2014 season begins in May and runs through August. The Lynx are scheduled to play six games to be televised by ESPN2.

March 03, 2014

Mayo Clinic to expand Superior Drive Support Center

Mayo Clinic is planning to expand its Superior Drive Support Center, which houses Mayo Medical Laboratories.

The clinic submitted plans on Feb. 14 to build a proposed 66,000-square-foot, two-story addition on the south side of the complex at 3050 Superior Drive N.W. 

03032014mayomedlabsMML conducts a wide variety of medical tests for hospitals worldwide. According to its website,
it performs nearly 20 million tests for more than 4,000 hospitals annually. The testing division overall has more than 3,200 employees, including more than 160 physicians and scientists. It has 58 laboratories that perform testing with support from Mayo Clinic physicians.

03032014SDSCplansWhile Mayo Clinic spokesperson confirmed the existence of site development application, officials there say it's too early to discuss specifics such as the timeline for the project or estimated cost. However, the plans designed by Flad Architects offer general details.

The expansion will more than double the lab space in the complex. It currently has 30,854 square feet of labs. The plans show that 34,000 square feet of laboratory area in the proposed addition to bring the total lab space to a total of 65,000 square feet.

Office space in the SDSC is slated to grow by 5,472 square feet, for a total of 137,000 square feet of space, following the expansion.

The remainder of the 26,000 square feet in the proposed expansion is described only as "Other." The first floor of the addition will have 28,533 square feet, and the second level will have 27,842.

Mayo Clinic moved into the 13-year-old complex in 2004. By 2011, approximately 800 employees worked at the facility. It was originally built by electronics manufacturer Celestica Inc. in 2001. When that company closed its Rochester operation, the building was left empty.

While Mayo Clinic leased the property for eight years, it purchased it for $18.5 million in August of 2012. Prior to that it was owned by 17 national investors through Triple Net Properties of Santa Ana, Calif. until they defaulted on the mortgage in 2012.  The investors bought the property for $36.8 million in 2006

When the mortgage defaulted, HSBC Bank USA took over the property. HSCB then sold it to Mayo Clinic.

While it was was originally under construction, New York City-based W. P. Carey & Co. LLC bought the complex from Celestica, which leased it back. W.P. Carey later sold it for about 70 percent more than the $21.6 million it paid for it.

February 18, 2014

Weber & Judd to revamp eatery into drug store

Weber & Judd will more than double in size when it moves its south Rochester pharmacy into a former restaurant.

Since it purchased it from Ruffalo Drug a number of years ago, Weber & Judd has owned a pharmacy inside the Olmsted Medical Center at 210 Ninth St. S.E. While it has been a good location for the Rochester-based drug store chain, a decision was made to move the pharmacy down the street to the corner of South Broadway into the former Azteca Mexican restaurant at 18 Ninth St. S.E.

"We've been listening to our customers, and we're expanding to better meet their needs," Weber & Judd General Manager Todd Fox said. "We're really excited about this location."

Renovation of the 2,000-square-foot building is slated to begin soon. Fox is shooting to have the former Pizza Hut turned Mexican restaurant transformed into a full-service, professional drug store by early spring.

02142014weberjuddaztecaThis spot will allow the pharmacy to expand its over-the-counter product lines as well as general beauty products and greeting cards. Fox said they hope to use the additional space to also spotlight regional products like Vanicream better. They also plan to add a diabetic center, blood pressure screening and a larger customer consultation area.

The new location will also allow them to offer easier access, curbside parking and longer hours than the current location.

"The other really cool thing about this location is that not only will it better serve our current customers, it will be convenient for any of our customers," says Fox. "This is a great opportunity."

While it will give the drug store a chance to provide new things, the more than 150-year-old Weber & Judd still will offer its traditional services, such as free home delivery. The plan is to highlight the company's long history in Rochester by decorating the store with old Weber & Judd photos.

Fox estimates that once the new location opens, it will be staffed with 12 or more employees.

February 13, 2014

Chiropractor to expand former gas station into new clinic

A longtime Rochester chiropractic clinic has acquired a former gas station with plans to renovate and expand it into a new home.

Dr. Todd and Shelly Buchanan, who own and operate Northgate Chiropractic, bought the empty ex-Super America station at 600 11th Ave. N.W. at the end of January. The building is near the clinic's current home in the Northgate Shopping Center at 1204 Seventh St. N.W.

Northgatechiro"We plan to expand it by 1,000 feet. It already has 1,000 feet of space more than we have now," says Shelly Buchanan. "We wanted to be able to do more for our patients than we can now."

The plan is to begin construction in May with a goal of opening in the new location by late August or early September. Rochester contractor Alvin E. Benike Inc. is slated to do the work.

When completed, the new clinic will feature four treatment rooms as well as new equipment , including a motion x-ray machine and a decompression table. Northgate has two chiropractors with a team of 10 support staff.

In addition to the full range of chiropractic services and massage therapy, the new center will allow the Buchanans to begin offering physicals for people applying for Class B driver's license. They both hold equipment operator licenses from helping out at Fenske Recycling in Byron, which was owned by Shelly's parents. The couple cite the support of the Steve Fenske, who died in the fall, as key to this project coming together.

"We doing this in honor of dad," says Shelly Buchanan.

The former Super America site became available last year, when Holiday Station Stores bought all of the SAs in Rochester. The Bloomington, Minn.-based Holiday decided to close the 11th Avenue store instead of changing it over to their brand.

Kwik Trip, which has a station very near that building, decided to buy it for the premium price of $825,000 to control the future use of the site. Holiday bought it a month before for $179,000. The Buchanans paid $300,000 for it. Nick Pompeian of Realty Growth Inc. handled the deal.

February 05, 2014

Mayo Clinic still fishing for plans for ex-Red Lobster space

Mayo Clinic has strapped on its bib and is taking a hammer to its Lobster.

Mayo has crews doing interior demolition in the former Red Lobster space at Second Street Southwest and Broadway in downtown Rochester. However, Mayo Clinic says that Exredlobster there's no plan behind the work being done in former 187-seat seafood restaurant.

"The future use of that space is still not decided," said Kelley Luckstein, Mayo Clinic public affairs.

The 11,880-square-foot, street-level space at 200 First St. S.W. is in the 60-year-old Rosa Parks Pavilion. Mayo Clinic has owned it since 1997.

After 25 years of leasing the space, Red Lobster moved out in 2011 to take over a former stand-alone restaurant by the Apache Mall. At that time, Mayo Clinic officials said they were considering options for the prominent downtown corner.

They were still pondering in 2012, when Mayo sent in workers to remove the carpet, paneling, ceiling tiles and bar left behind by the restaurant.

That work permit was very detailed in describing the purpose." Just removing items for clean-up to get rid of fish odor," it said. "Future tenant not defined at this time."

This latest permit, filed with the city last week, is not as colorful nor specific. However, it did estimate the value of the interior demolition job at $65,000.

That's a lot of clams for work on a space that has been drifting along without direction for three years.

It seems that Mayo Clinic still is fishing for a definition for that phrase from the 2012 permit: "Future tenant."

December 10, 2013

Mayo Clinic wraps up $10 million buy of old courthouse site

Amid the boom in downtown development and the flurry of Destination Medical Center activity, a sale of a historic Rochester property has wrapped up after 20 years.

Mayo Clinic now officially owns the former Olmsted County Courthouse property after making the last payment of a $10.1 million, 20 year Contract for Deed deal.

The final payment was made on Sept. 1 to complete the agreement that was originally signed between the Mayo Foundation and Olmsted County in October 1993, according to Kelley Luckstein of Mayo Clinic.Get_photo

Mayo Clinic spent $7.7 million to renovate the courthouse into what is now the Ozmun office buildings at 515 Second St. The revamped complex was dedicated in 1995. The property also includes the Dan Abraham Healthy Living Center at 565 First St. S.W.

The buildings and property on Second Street Southwest became available after the then-new City-county Government Center at 151 Fourth St. S.E. was dedicated in 1993.

After paying $1 down as earnest money, Mayo Clinic made payments to the county every Sept. 1. The first installment was $1,031,946 and then the payment increased by one dollar for the next four years.

By the fifth year, the payment grew to $1,216,807 for five years. It increased to $1,401,665 on year 11 and the annual remained at that level through the final payment.

The original deal was made by the Mayo Foundation, but that entity has since been converted into the Mayo Clinic legal body, says Luckstein. On Nov. 19, the ownership was transferred from the foundation to Mayo Clinic.

December 05, 2013

Breast cancer scanner maker, once linked to Mayo Clinic, sold to Mexican company

Qg3q4q112233Here's a potentially interesting nugget of news about San Diego-based Naviscan Inc., which was at one pointed linked with Mayo Clinic through intellectual property licenses as well as direct investment by Mayo Medical Ventures.

"… Certain Naviscan Inc. assets including intellectual property and the Naviscan Trademark" have been aquired by a Mexican medical scanner company called Compañía Mexicana de Radiología or CMR.

Not sure what that means exactly, but my guess is that CMR is now behind the steering wheel at Naviscan.

Now I don't know if Mayo Clinic still has any links with Naviscan, but it certainly did at one time. I've got calls into Mayo and Naviscan to check on that.

I wrote the Mayo Clinic-Naviscan relationship back in 2005 through 2007 or so. Sheesh, I've been doing this for a long time.

From back in November 2005:

Naviscan “entered into an agreement with Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research (Mayo Clinic) to clinically validate and commercialize a dynamic patented molecular imaging agent for use with Positron Emission Tomography (PET) and other imaging modalities. … Mayo Clinic has licensed the vitamin B-12 molecular imaging agent technology invented by Dr. Douglas A.Collins to Naviscan PET Systems, Inc and will receive royalties from this license. Researchers at the Mayo Clinic have published studies that cancers have high uptake of radioactive B-12, especially in breast tumors."

    --------------------
"The combination of the Mayo Clinic’s patented Vitamin B-12 molecular imaging agent and Naviscan’s high-resolution PET scanner holds great promise for the future in terms of early detection of breast cancers,” said Paul Grayson, newly-appointed CEO of Naviscan PET Systems, Inc. and a Managing Director of Sanderling Ventures. “We sought out Naviscan’s technology to strategically invest in this important imaging technology platform.” Naviscan is planning clinical trial work with Mayo Clinic and other luminary sites in the U.S. to prove the value of the PEM Flex in breast cancer patients, as well as for evaluating PEM’s role with high-risk patients.”

----

From the same date in 2005:

“Naviscan PET Systems has raised a $6.5 million in Series B funding for its high resolution positron emission tomography (PET) products. The firm said that it raised the round from Sanderling Ventures, with participation from Mayo Medical Ventures."

FYI, Sanderling Ventures now leases a space in the Mayo Clinic Business Accelerator.