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Alere Inc. (ALR - Snapshot Report), a medical products company focused on integrating rapid diagnostics with health management, has recently collaborated with Virtua, one of New Jersey’s largest health care providers.

Virtua is already using Alere's Health Information Exchange (HIE) and plans to further extend its alliance by using Alere’s Clinical Support solution to enhance patient support. The platform is capable of identifying the gap in both preventive and critical patient care allowing better decision-making for physicians such as the kind of medical attention required for individual patients. Both the companies are planning to display the care coordination program at the Virtua Voorhees Hospital.

In addition, Virtua will also include Alere’s nurses as a part of its care coordination team. It will integrate data from Alere’s care management solutions and personal health record into its HIE platform to facilitate better collaboration between patients, providers, and care managers.

Virtua will also set up 500 biometric monitoring devices in patient’s homes, which is capable of transferring vital health data to the HIE, allowing nurses from Virtua as well as Alere to immediately identify any detrimental event.

Our Take

Massachusetts-based Alere caters to patient health by providing diagnostic tools and services that increase patient awareness for self-management. It has a wide portfolio of rapid diagnostic and monitoring products to improve clinical outcomes. The company aims to be the leader in rapid ‘near-patient’ or point-of-care testing (POCT) or diagnostics. We believe that this strategic partnership might provide some operating leverage to Alere.

However, Alere is plagued by margin pressure. The company has been reporting losses for quite sometime. Its heavy reliance on acquisitions has led to substantial indebtedness. Alere needs to successfully integrate the acquired entities to avoid wastage of resources.

Alere carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). But NuVasive, Inc. (NUVA - Snapshot Report), Cyberonics (CYBX - Analyst Report)  and PLC Systems Inc. (PLCSF), which carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), from the medical devices industry are expected to do well.

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