DOTmed News recently sat down with Robert Dakessian
, president and CEO of Genesis Medical Imaging, Inc., a CT and MRI service specialist based in Huntley, Ill. Dakessian discussed the trends in the imaging service industry and offered insight to the future.
DOTmed News: Can you talk a little bit about the trends and changes in the imaging service industry?
It's important to understand that this business is cyclical. OEMs dominated years ago and then ISOs came in and dominated. Hospitals then try taking a lot of services in-house. Right now, ISO-industry services dominate. Economic constraints force hospitals to look at cutting more costs. They are turning more to ISOs and in-house services. Hospitals have depended on OEMs for years, but now through premier service organizations, like Genesis, they don't have to do that. We can provide the safe alternatives to OEMs and the support to in-house groups, to become independent from OEMs.
DM: Last year, you told DOTmed News that there would be consolidations over the next two years, for example, mergers and acquisitions. How accurate has that prediction been?
I'm not surprised [about the consolidations]. It's a coming trend. There's a lot going on. At the end of the tunnel, I believe there will be a couple of strong national premier service organizations. The small companies will remain small, local ISOs. By staying true to our core competency in CT, MRI and PET/CT and continuing to invest in proprietary technology, we believe it will give Genesis the competitive edge.
DM: How has Genesis Medical Imaging grown since you last met with DOTmed News?
We plan to open two new territories by year's end, in addition to our current 12 territories throughout the country. We're also expanding internationally and expect to have more news about this in the coming weeks. This new relationships should bring a significant amount of business [to Genesis] virtually immediately.
This year, Genesis has improved over last year's growth rate. As you know, Genesis has carved out what we consider a new niche in the industry, offering both the safe OEM quality and the customer focus and value of an ISO.
We find that luminary customers who would not consider a traditional ISO in the past are finding Genesis as the only premier service organization that offers innovative safe alternative to OEMs and the value they need in today's economic landscape.
DM: Can you explain your company's new Predict/Prevent model that is designed to reduce equipment downtime and lower repair costs?
Our Predict/Prevent model is different than most ISOs' break/fix model, and it's designed to be another Genesis innovation for lowering costs while improving reliability. It's also a way to differentiate ourselves from competitors, both OEMs and ISOs. The model of most service companies is a contract to do preventive maintenance, and when something breaks, they will come in and fix it. Our model advances that thinking.
Predict/Prevent helps customers reduce downtime and take care of issues before something happens. The repair costs are far less, and we pass these cost savings on to our customers.
With the old break/fix model, a customer, unknown to them, will probably continue using [the equipment] until the system breaks down. The traditional provider will replace this part or parts on that system, which turns into a costly repair. Our Prevent/Predict test uses SPARC, a proprietary method to measure and test consistency and performance of systems, something like a blood test at your annual physical exam. It diagnoses and discovers issues that do not yet cause symptoms. We then can replace items or fix problems at the earliest time, at a very small fraction of the traditional cost. Predict/Prevent is an excellent example of the innovation we hope to continue bringing to the industry.
DM: What multi-vendor services do you now offer? How does that help customers?
Earlier this year we expanded our services to PET/CT, 3T MRIs, Siemens and Philips MRI, and some models of Philips and Siemens CT. Our next goal is Toshiba CT. We have started letting our customers know. This helps customers with one-stop solutions - to have all of [their] needs taken care of by a single national provider they can trust and who cares about their business.