Company breaks gamma camera sales records in U.S.The nuclear medicine division of Israeli multimodality vendor Elscint hopes to make high-energy imaging easier and cheaper for its gamma camera customers through an FDG distribution deal signed this
Company breaks gamma camera sales records in U.S.
The nuclear medicine division of Israeli multimodality vendor Elscint hopes to make high-energy imaging easier and cheaper for its gamma camera customers through an FDG distribution deal signed this month with P.E.T.Net Pharmaceutical Services. Elscint hopes to assemble its customers into a purchasing cooperative that can secure discounts on bulk buys of FDG from P.E.T.Net, according to Joe Sardano, vice president of nuclear medicine sales for Elscints U.S. subsidiary in Hackensack, NJ.
Elscint hopes the agreement will ease the entry of many of its customers into coincidence detection imaging by helping them secure access to FDG. P.E.T.Net was formed in 1996 with the goal of establishing a nationwide network of cyclotrons to provide FDG to the nuclear medicine marketplace (SCAN 11/12/97).
In addition to the FDG supply deal, Elscint and P.E.T.Net are cooperating in an effort to educate the public, physicians, and insurance carriers about the benefits of high-energy imaging, Sardano said. The companies will jointly sponsor physician training programs at Elscints nuclear medicine luminary site, Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, and will also go on the road to sponsor a series of symposia to spread the word across the U.S., Sardano said. The first symposium in the series will take place at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System in Palo Alto, CA, on July 25.
Elscints own coincidence detection program is moving toward commercialization, with beta testing under way at Vanderbilt and Duke University in Durham, NC. Production shipments should begin in the fourth quarter, Sardano said.
Elscint plans to discuss the new initiatives at the upcoming Society of Nuclear Medicine meeting in Toronto. The company also has several new product announcements forthcoming, Sardano said. Elscint will announce that it has begun shipments of MagiCam, a new variable-angle dual-head gamma camera that is priced about 15% below the companys premium VariCam. MagiCam is based on a different gantry and carries different detectors than VariCam, but it is designed to meet all of a hospitals nuclear medicine needs, with the exception of coincidence detection imaging.
Elscint hopes that MagiCam will enable the company to fuel the considerable momentum it is already enjoying thanks to strong VariCam sales. Elscints year-to-date sales performance in the U.S. is double that of the same period last year, Sardano said. Elscints U.S. performance has also been aided by the companys renewed emphasis on the North American market: The vendor moved the headquarters of its international nuclear medicine division to Hackensack as part of a corporate restructuring last year (SCAN 11/12/97). Although the U.S. gamma camera market is healthy, Elscint believes that most of its growth is coming through market-share gains.
The leadership that exists right now, with the new emphasis that Elscint has put on the Americas and in particular the U.S. market, is making a tremendous impact, Sardano said. There is unprecedented support.