Varian Medical Systems
) revealed that it has received 510(k) clearance from the U.S.
Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its RapidPlan
knowledge-based software. The software helps automate an
important part of the treatment planning process, thereby
improving the quality and efficiency of care.
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RapidPlan has been showcased at the 54th annual meeting of the
American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) in Atlanta in
September. It provides standard of care models to clinicians to
use as a baseline for formulating complex intensity-modulated
radiotherapy (IMRT) treatment plans for their patients.
RapidPlan helps users to gain knowledge derived from historical
treatment plans. It also serves as a learning tool as clinicians
can add their best treatment plans to the system and create a new
and improved treatment practice model. This model can be shared
among other clinicians within a network and create a standard of
Similar products offered by VAR include the RapidArc technology
and the Smart Segmentation knowledge-based tool. Based on the
cost effectiveness of the new softwares, management plans to
create more knowledge-driven solutions for the entire oncology
Varian is poised to increase its global market share in the
radiation oncology market as international markets are still
under-equipped to address the growing incidence of cancer.
However, the oncology business in North America is witnessing a
drop in capital expenditure on account of uncertainty emanating
from health care reform and anticipated changes in reimbursement.
VAR currently retains a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). While we prefer to
avoid the stock, other stocks from the medical instruments
industry that are worth a look include
Mindray Medical International Limited
), with a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), and
MAKO Surgical Corp.
), both with a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).