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Patrick Soon-Shiong, MD, and Three Healthcare Companies Win 2009 Innovations in Healthcare Awards

Congratulations to the 2009 "Leadership in Innovation" Award Winner Patrick Soon-Shiong, MD, Chairman and CEO of Abraxis Health, as well as the ABBY Award winners announced at ABL Organization's 11th Annual Innovations in HealthcareSM Awards Event this week. They were: Dakim, Inc.; Epocrates, Inc.; and Osmetech Molecular Diagnostics.

Santa Ana, CA (PRWEB) November 2, 2009 -- Congratulations to the 2009 "Leadership in Innovation" Award Winner Patrick Soon-Shiong, MD, Chairman and CEO of Abraxis Health, as well as the ABBY Award winners announced at ABL Organization's 11th Annual Innovations in HealthcareSM Awards Event this week. They were: Dakim, Inc.; Epocrates, Inc.; and Osmetech Molecular Diagnostics. The Awards Event drew top executives from healthcare providers, information, medical and bio-technology, wellness, and professional services companies, as well as federal and county government representatives.

Patrick Soon-Shiong, MD, was honored with this year's "Leadership in Innovation" Award in recognition of his multi-faceted goals to "completely change the mindset about healthcare," as well as his already significant contributions to medicine and the industry. Ranked #65 on the Forbes 400 Richest Americans 2009 list, Patrick made headlines this week for his offer to provide University of California regents with a $100-million guaranty underwriting Los Angeles County's latest proposal to reopen Martin Luther King Jr.-Harbor Hospital by 2012. Meanwhile, in recent years, his charitable family foundation has given some $135 million to St. John's Health Center in Santa Monica; he has also committed $1 billion to help create a smart grid for medical information, and has vowed to support efforts that will motivate the industry to maintain health rather than just treat illness. He has founded and led highly successful pharmaceutical companies Abraxis Bioscience (through which he co-invented Abraxane, a breakthrough anti-cancer drug), and APP (which he sold to Fresenius last year for $3.7 billion). Years ago, he performed the first islet-cell transplant, and he's the named inventor on over 50 issued U.S. patents. Patrick is currently leading Abraxis Health, which is dedicated to the discovery, development, validation and clinical application of diagnostics and therapeutics that are tailored - "personalized" - to the specific molecular profile of patients, in order to offer safer and more effective treatments for critical illnesses.

Prior to Dr. Soon-Shiong's keynote presentation at the Awards Event, which was held on October 28, in Newport Beach, "Pre-Noter" David Sayen, CMS Region IX Administrator, discussed the innovation he's seen over his nearly 30 years of government service - during which ash trays on every desk have been replaced with computers. He also spoke of the government's "innovations," like payments to physicians and hospitals based on Relative Value Scales and Diagnostic Related Groups (or case rates), that have since become the models for the commercial insurance industry. And, he even shared how, through the efforts of CMS' own "Town Halls," physicians in some locales - such as Nevada, who as recently as a year ago were hostile to the idea of Electronic Medical Records, are now getting on board with the concept.

Dr. Soon-Shiong's keynote address was followed by the presentation of the 2009 ABBY Awards, one given in each of three categories, from a field of nine Finalists. "Throughout the afternoon, as they accepted their Innovations in Healthcare ABBYs, the Awardees shed insights into why they are so successful," noted ABL President and event convener, Mimi Grant. "They all seemed to share three traits in common: a clear and compelling vision, a personal passion, and persistence."

"Leadership in Innovation" Awardee Patrick Soon-Shiong mentioned that the "110%" of the stock in his company, Abraxis Bioscience, was shorted: "The shorts were so certain we were wrong [about Abraxane,his nanoparticle delivery technology," Soon-Shiong recalled. "But, of course, the shorts were wrong," Grant added. "The stock soared, and Patrick landed in spot #65 on the Forbes 400 richest Americans list." Reminiscent of Andrew Carnegie, who spent the first half of his life making his fortune and the second half giving it away, Dr. Soon-Shiong's personal passion for ensuring that patients in the inner city have access to the same quality of care as those in Beverly Hills has resulted in impressive philanthropy. He hinted at his latest gift at Wednesday's Event; the following day it was announced in the Los Angeles Times: he's offering to provide the UC regents with a $100 million guaranty to underwrite the reopening of Martin Luther King Jr.-Harbor Hospital in South Central L.A.

Jeff Tangney, President of Epocrates, Inc., and ABBY winner in the "Innovation in Healthcare Information and Telecommunications Technology" category, shared that he started the company 10 years ago out of his home, when a physician friend mentioned that the accuracy of prescribing drugs was like flipping a coin, except he didn't have the time to flip the coin. The two went on to found Epocrates, which is now used by 900,000 healthcare professionals - one-third of U.S. physicians and 40% of our med students.

Dan Michel, CEO of Dakim, Inc. and winner of the ABBY for "Innovative Approach to the Delivery of Healthcare," saw the horrors of Alzheimer's firsthand as his father struggled with the disease. So Dan built tools to help his dad through it. In 2000, he too started his company in a spare bedroom, blending his filmmaking talents with his hands-on experience of caring for his father. Today, Dakim's systems are the number-one brand of brain fitness products in America's senior living communities.

In 1994, Faiz Kayyem, CEO of Osmetech Molecular Diagnostics, then a Caltech student, was asked what he planned to do with his life, and was told: "if your answer does not include 'human genome project,' you fail." Fortunately for Faiz - and millions of people who can benefit from his technology, his answer, his career, and his company have all centered on the human genome. Osmetech's product, the eSensor®, is the first FDA-cleared DNA microarray product based on electrochemical detection of DNA hybridization for molecular diagnostics, enabling personalized medicine. It also earned him the ABBY Award for "Innovation in Medical/Biotechnology."

Recipients of the Innovations in HealthcareSM ABBY Awards were chosen by members of the Adaptive Business Leaders (ABL) Organization after viewing nine presentations made by three Finalists in each category. The other Award Finalists were: in the "Innovative Approach to the Delivery of Healthcare" category: HeartMath LLC and Kaiser Permanente's Internet Services Group; in the "Innovative Medical/Biotechnology" category: Abaxis, Inc. and Biomatrica; and in the "Innovative Healthcare Information & Telecommunications Technology" category: MedApps; and MMR Information Systems, Inc.

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