Supreme Court decision helps ISOs

June 17, 1992

Medical imaging third-party service companies took heart froma Supreme Court decision this month that affirmed the right ofa group of ISOs to sue Eastman Kodak in a lower court. The ISOsallege that Kodak used its control over spare parts for its

Medical imaging third-party service companies took heart froma Supreme Court decision this month that affirmed the right ofa group of ISOs to sue Eastman Kodak in a lower court. The ISOsallege that Kodak used its control over spare parts for its ownphotocopying and other equipment to exclude them from participatingin the service of these machines.

Picker International included details from briefs filed inthe Kodak Supreme Court case in its motion to have claims by ISOImaging Equipment Services dismissed, said IES president Tom Quinn.

"It was a cornerstone of their case for summary judgment,"he told SCAN.

A key issue in the Kodak case was the fact that the companydoes not have a dominant position in the photocopier market, althoughit controls the bulk of parts for its own equipment.

"It (the Supreme Court ruling) apparently establishedthat the Kodak market was a market to itself," Quinn said.

Scanner vendors also refuse at times to sell replacement partsfor their systems, making it difficult for medical ISOs to compete,said Tom Owings, president and CEO of MEDIQ Equipment & MaintenanceServices.

"This decision by the Supreme Court goes a long way towardcreating a level playing field for our company and other ISOs,"Owings said.

BRIEFLY NOTED:

  • MediTek Health is aggressively branching its imaging centerbusiness out of the regulation-shocked Florida market. The firmoutbid competitor NMR of America last month to purchase a NewJersey imaging center. MediTek is run by Paul M. Stanley, formerpresident of mobile MRI vendor Quantum Imaging. The Tampa-basedimaging center business, originally called Genesis HealthcareManagement, was formed by Stanley following Quantum's acquisitionby Medical Imaging Centers of America (SCAN 4/24/91).

Stanley lined up Florida aerospace firm Heico to purchase hisfledgling imaging services firm last year. He now serves as presidentand COO of Heico's MediTek Health subsidiary. The Hollywood, FL,conglomerate brought deep pockets to fund the acquisition of physician-ownedcenters not in conformance with regulations on referring-physicianownership of medical centers (SCAN 11/6/91).

Chatham MRI of Chatham, NJ, will be the fifth imaging centeracquisition for MediTek since its formation in September. NMRof America had signed a letter of intent with Chatham MRI. TheMorristown, NJ, center firm indicated that some covenants in theletter may have been breached by Chatham MRI and that NMR of Americaintends to "pursue whatever remedies are available to it."