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Quest Diagnostics Reports Strong Performance in Third Quarter 2009
Date:10/20/2009

MADISON, N.J., Oct. 20 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Quest Diagnostics Incorporated (NYSE: DGX), the world's leading provider of diagnostic testing, information and services, announced that for the third quarter ended September 30, 2009, income from continuing operations rose to $192 million, or $1.02 per diluted share, from $160 million, or $0.81 per diluted share, for the third quarter of 2008. In 2008, third quarter results were reduced by a $0.03 per share charge associated with the write-down of an equity investment, and a $0.02 per share impact associated with hurricanes.

Third quarter revenues increased 3.9% to $1.9 billion compared to the prior year. Clinical testing revenues increased by 4.3% compared to the prior year. Revenue per requisition increased 4.3%. Underlying volume in clinical testing, measured by the number of requisitions, continued to grow in the quarter. Reported testing volume was unchanged from the prior year and reflected a 23% decline in drugs-of-abuse testing volume, which is sensitive to hiring trends, and which reduced the company's consolidated volume by 1.7%. In the third quarter of 2008, consolidated revenues and volume were reduced by approximately half a percent as a result of the impact of hurricanes.

"Quest Diagnostics' strong financial performance continues to be driven by increased demand in testing for cancer, sexually transmitted diseases, allergies and Vitamin D levels. Based on our strong performance, we are raising earnings guidance for the full year," said Surya N. Mohapatra, Ph.D., Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "Our continued focus on innovation is driving growth today and positioning Quest Diagnostics well for the future. We recently introduced the first commercial test for the H1N1 flu virus authorized by the FDA for emergency use, and launched a saliva-based genetic test th
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