ALSO NOTED: United Health Group in drug safety data deal; Red Cross criticized over relief work; and much more...

> The SEC has upgraded its investigation into the relationship between HCA and Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) to a formal inquiry. Article

> The Guidant inquiry may be evolving into a criminal investigation. Article

> HIT: The FDA has signed a deal with United Health Group and three other industry players which will allow government researchers access to drug safety data. Article

> MedImmune has signed a deal with HHS to make a set of avian flu vaccines. Shares in the Maryland-based company are up sharply over the last month. Article

> Critics are unhappy with the way the Red Cross is spending its funds. Article

> Researchers said quality control techniques already used by the auto industry and computer makers can help save the lives of heart attack patients. Article

> Could group visits to the doctor be the answer to long patient waiting times? Kaiser Permanente is testing the idea at some OB/GYN practices. Report

> Eli Lilly said it will add a black box warning label to its attention deficit drug Strattera. Article

> A defense fund has been set up to pay for the legal bills of the New Hampshire physician facing disciplinary action for lecturing a patient about her weight. Article

> New research in the New England Journal of Medicine suggests it may be possible to increase the safety of bone marrow transplants. Article

> A University of Missouri Hospital faces a class action suit after it provided patient medical records to a third-party vendor. Article

> Pennsylvania-based Independence Blue Cross Blue Shield looks well-positioned to take advantage of the Medicare Part D market. Article

And Finally... An HIV-positive couple from California who say they do not believe in AIDS will be allowed to retain custody of their eight-year-old son, despite the death of their daughter. Article