“Traditional features between systems are at parity in a lot of cases,” report analyst Emil Salazar said. “So the competition is in the development of the best hematology-specific middleware and IT solutions. It’s shaping to be the next phase in the core lab hematology arms race.”
Middleware includes software and accompanying vendor services that provide an interface between an in vitro diagnostic (IVD) instrument and laboratory information system (LIS), or between instruments in the same work area of a lab. Kalorama Information estimates that approximately 25% of major hematology vendors’ revenue in the North American market is from services, including maintenance and training services, as well as middleware contracts and IT services. Service revenue has been an important component to vendor sales in developed markets where reagent sales are linked to gradual testing volume growth and poor investment climates have inhibited lab instrument purchasing. The market for middleware and other IT services is limited only by the installed base of target instruments while demand for operational lab efficiency remains high.
Leading hematology players Sysmex, Beckman Coulter, Abbott Diagnostics, Siemens Healthcare Diagnostics and Horiba all offer clients hematology-applicable middleware. Prominent among middleware solutions is Sysmex’s hematology-specific WAM™ software marketed in the United States. The U.S. market is the last remaining major regional market where Sysmex has yet to gain a leading share in hematology. Previous hematology-focused innovations delivered significant gains in market share for Sysmex in Europe, North America, and across the world; hematology-specific middleware coupled with the company’s industry leadership figure to next improve Sysmex’s U.S. market standing.
“Another incentive [to provide middleware] also exists for the several leading core lab players involved in hematology,”
Demand for middleware in hematology is also on the rise as a result of lab industry consolidation. Standardization of testing rules, data reporting and sample management aids in the coordination of care across multiple sites or facilities. Expanding healthcare organizations with centralized lab operations can similarly leverage hematology-specific middleware to improve lab efficiency through customized rulemaking that reduces reflex and repeat testing.
“The use of hematology middleware provides labs added flexibility in terms of integrating added testing volumes and managing resources through periods of transition,”
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212 807 2622
212 807 2622