20 Takeaways from Exact Sciences call: “Cologuard fits seamlessly into a permanently changed healthcare environment”


20 Takeaways from Exact Sciences call: “Cologuard fits seamlessly into a permanently changed healthcare environment”

Last week, Exact Sciences, the maker of Cologuard announced their first quarter results. Here are 23 takeaways from their earnings call.
The 2020 Q1 earnings call was based on three key topics:
◘ Near-term challenges presented by the coronavirus and steps the Exact Sciences team is taking to respond
◘ The company’s positioning to provide smarter solutions to patients and providers across the cancer continuum 
◘ Delivering value over the long term

 

Let’s start with some numbers:
◘ Total revenue was $347.8 million (compare that to $162 million in Q1 2019 and $296 million in Q4 2019)
◘ Screening revenue was $219.5 million with an increase of 35% 
◘ Precision Oncology revenue was $128.4 million
These takeaways are based on the Q1 2020 Earnings Call. Kevin Conroy, Chairman and CEO, Exact Sciences and Jeff Elliott, Chief Financial Officer, Exact Sciences made these remarks.

 


 Takeaways: 
1. The company plans to play an even greater role in cancer screening and guiding therapy decisions after the coronavirus abates.
2. Approximately 9,000 new healthcare providers ordered Cologuard during the first quarter, and nearly 206,000 providers ordered Cologuard since launch. 
3. Cologuard test orders have shown a 63% year-over-year decline during the first 20 days of April.
4. The Exact Sciences team rewrote 2020 priorities in response to the coronavirus pandemic. New priorities are: getting people tested, taking care of customers, preserving financial strength.    
5. The company is using its marketing and inside sales tools to reach healthcare providers virtually.
6. Exact Sciences has accelerated the launch of their telehealth site with patient education resources. People can now request a telehealth consult specific to Cologuard from home. The company feels that telehealth has opened a new way for people to access Cologuard from the safety of their own home.
7. The company introduced new advertisements to raise awareness of the importance of staying up-to-date with screening and the opportunity to order Cologuard online as they believe that in a COVID world, TV viewership rates are a lot higher now than they were pre-COVID.
8. The company reckons that because of the pandemic there is a significant backlog of those who need to be screened. And that this backlog will continue to grow as focus remains on more urgent diagnostic colonoscopies. They believe that Cologuard can play an important role in alleviating this backlog and getting more people screened. 
9. Exact Sciences recently closed the acquisition of Paradigm, a company specialized in advanced cancer therapy selection. They plan to expand the tissue-based Paradigm test. They also plan to make an enhanced tissue-based and a blood-based version of the Paradigm test that’s currently available.
10. Exact Sciences has decided to develop and roll out testing for the SARS CoV-2 virus. They have the capacity to test more than 60,000 people per week. 
11. The company has secured FDA emergency use authorization and scaled up their Madison lab sites to handle significant volumes. 
12. The company remarked that cancer doesn’t stop for anything and COVID-19 highlights the value of Cologuard and Oncotype DX. 
13. Exact Sciences has estimated that roughly 300,000 to 350,000 screening colonoscopies per month are not happening right now due to COVID-19.
14. According to the company the volume of Cologuard did not fall anywhere near and as fast as screening colonoscopies.
15. The company is having conversations with the GI societies and are foreseeing to partner with GIs to get people screened. 
16. According to the company, through their partnership with Epic, around 40% and 50% of all primary care providers in the U.S. are on the Epic platform. Later this year, Epic will release new functionality that will enable the providers to order electronically. 
17. The company has high coverage in Medicare and increasing coverage in Medicaid. They believe that the broad coverage will help them lessen the impact of rising unemployment. Medicare mix from a volume standpoint in Q1 was about 44%. 
18. Some of the major trials that the company had under way are temporarily paused. For example, BLUE-C (prospective trial) is temporarily paused. 
19. Some of the trials like Cologuard 2.0, colon blood product and the liver cancer test will continue.
20. The company expects to be more profitable as it comes out of COVID-19 than they would have been otherwise. 
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References:
Exact Sciences Corp (EXAS) Q1 2020 Earnings Call Transcript (The Motley Fool)  
Exact Sciences Announces First Quarter 2020 Results (Exact Sciences)  
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