RadNet Enters Teleradiology Arena with Imaging On Call Acquisition

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In a move that marks its entry into the teleradiology sector, outpatient diagnostic imaging services provider RadNet earlier this week reported it has executed a definitive agreement to acquire Poughkeepsie, NY-based teleradiology provider Imaging On Call, LLC for $5.5 million, plus up to $2.5 million in contingent compensation if the latter achieves certain 2011 performance milestones.

RadNet currently provides fixed-site outpatient diagnostic imaging services through a network of 198 fully-owned and operated outpatient-imaging centers. Imaging On Call CEO Michael Lampron anticipates being able to expand service into new subspecialty areas. “RadNet prides itself on dedicated research- and design-based innovation, which we believe will enable us to nurture and support the existing services we provide to our customers while adding other ones,” Lampron told ImagingBiz.

RadNet President and CEO Howard G. Berger, MD, believes the acquisition will enhance the organization’s ability to partner with hospitals and accountable care organizations in joint ventures.

“For many years, our approximately 350 contracted radiologists have utilized remote reading capabilities to service our owned and operated facilities and hospital joint ventures,” Berger, MD said in a statement announcing the agreement. “It is natural that we would begin to offer these same capabilities to organizations outside of RadNet. The acquisition of Imaging On Call provides us the infrastructure, operational platform, and customer relationships to succeed in providing these services. Because a majority of Imaging On Call's customers overlap RadNet's current operating regions in the northeastern United States, it is the ideal platform from which to grow.”

Berger added that in particular, Imaging On Call will serve as a key catalyst in augmenting RadNet’s strategies for partnering with hospitals and accountable care organizations in joint ventures, regardless of their geography. “We are especially excited about being able to offer prospective hospital joint venture partners a portfolio of solutions that includes various management services for outpatient and inpatient imaging operations, software solutions and professional radiology services, including teleradiology and on-site staffing," he explained.

Imaging On Call’s Lampron said in a telephone interview that his company’s status as a wholly-owned RadNet subsidiary following the anticipated acquisition will enable it to conduct business as usual, while leveraging the depth of resources and scalability a larger organization such as RadNet can offer. “Over the past eight years, we have developed a top-tier operating platform characterized by great technology and excellent customer service,” Lampron told imagingBiz. “We have always offered subspecialty services. However, with RadNet behind us, a greater availability of resources will permit us to broaden the base of services where we see the highest need—specifically, in the areas of musculoskeletal and neuroradiology.”

Imaging On Call delivers emergent and non-emergent daytime and nighttime teleradiology interpretations to radiology groups, hospitals and imaging centers. Its offerings include preliminary, final and subspecialty coverage over a range of imaging modalities, among them CT, MRI, Ultrasound, Nuclear Medicine and X-ray. The company presently contracts with hospital-based and non-hospital based radiology groups, hospitals, imaging centers and research foundations, to which it provides remote interpretation of diagnostic imaging exams. Imaging On Call is Joint Commission–accredited for final and preliminary reads. Its currently contracted radiologists, the vast majority of whom are located in the United States, hold active licenses in 28 states and the District of Columbia.

The acquisition is slated to close on or around December 31, 2010, and is subject to a vote of Imaging On Call's LLC membership interest holders approving the transaction. Imaging On Call is expected to initially add approximately $10 million of revenue to RadNet on an annual basis.