Hospitals, Diagnostics

Morning Read: Walgreens pauses its Theranos deal, increasing the doomsayer rhetoric

Also, Valeant Pharmaceuticals creates a committee to probe its relationship with Philidor, Martin Shkreli does an (icky?) Reddit AMA, and there’s a big move in cloud computing.

TOP STORIES

People are starting to talk nightmare scenarios after the latest Theranos news: Walgreens has, at the least, hit pause on opening more blood-testing centers. From Dan Munro: “I am not an attorney, and while I’m not aware of any pending litigation, it’s getting harder to imagine how the growing controversy surrounding Theranos has any concrete resolution outside a court of law.” (Reminder: Elizabeth Holmes speaks at Cleveland Clinic’s innovation conference this evening. We’ll liveblog the talk) – Wall Street Journal, Forbes

Valeant has made a flurry of moves this morning. It’s brought back former board member G. Mason Morfit, appointing him to a new committee to probe the company’s relationship with Philidor. Valeant says it is in “full compliance with applicable law.” But now it gets to wade through anecdotes like this:

Around the Phoenix-area offices of mail-order pharmacy Philidor Rx Services LLC, employees said they often ran into a friendly colleague named Bijal Patel who tracked prescriptions. But when the employees got an email from the colleague, they say he used a different name: Peter Parker, the alter ego of Spider-Man.

Shares of Valeant stumbled early Monday. – Bloomberg, CNBC, Wall Street Journal

LIFE SCIENCES

Put this in the “ewwww gross” department. Martin Shkreli did a Reddit AMA and shared the full fallout of Daraprim (which includes new dating opportunities). – TechCrunch, Reddit

There are a lot of factors in this report on biotech M&A that you’ll be familiar with. But how long will the two short-term factors – low interest rates and Obamacare fallout – be around? BioSpace

Belbuca, BioDelivery Sciences chronic pain treatment, has won FDA approval. – Reuters

PAYERS-PROVIDERS

Confessions of a Red Blanket Doctor: “On the record, doctors say that they treat all of their patients equally. Off the record, they reveal a range of answers. I, too, have been guilty of giving special treatment to red blanket patients.” – The New York Times

VMG Health, which provides healthcare acquisition and related advisory services, has been acquired by the private equity firm Quad-C Management. – Business Wire

TECHNOLOGY

A new cloud powerhouse on the horizon? Read this behind-the-scenes story about how and why Intel and Oracle are teaming up to take on IBM. – Business Insider

POLITICS

The Planned Parenthood controversy has crossed a new threshold. Texas state investigators are seeking data that include patient records. – The New York Times

A LITTLE BIT EXTRA

This is a great look at how the tech industry keeps trying to transform education – and what it will almost always fail: “The tech industry fetishizes failure—the millions of eggs that must be broken on the way to making a unicorn omelet. That may be fine for business models or user interfaces, but not so great when those eggs are your kids.” – WIRED

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