Citing Need for Early and Accurate Carbon Monoxide Exposure Detection Following Disasters, Agency Unanimously Approves and Authorizes Funds to Purchase Rad-57s
IRVINE, Calif., April 28 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Masimo (Nasdaq: MASI), the inventor of Pulse CO-Oximetry(TM) and Measure-Through Motion and Low-Perfusion pulse oximetry, announced today that the Masimo Rad-57 Pulse CO-Oximeter has been added to the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) list of required health and safety equipment for all Urban Search & Rescue (US&R) task forces throughout the United States. FEMA authorizes funding for each of its US&R task forces to purchase multiple Rad-57s, enabling them to quickly, accurately and noninvasively detect carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning on the scene of disaster recovery operations.
FEMA has 28 national US&R task forces staffed and equipped to conduct round-the-clock search and rescue operations following earthquakes, tornadoes, floods, hurricanes, aircraft accidents, hazardous materials spills, and catastrophic structure collapses. Search and rescue operations often function in confined or poorly ventilated spaces with gas-powered equipment producing elevated levels of CO, which until now had been an overlooked hazard. Adding the Rad-57 to its mandatory medical equipment cache now allows FEMA's US&R task forces to quickly, noninvasively evaluate and address the significant health and safety risks associated with CO poisoning for both civilians and rescue personnel in the urban search and rescue environment - helping to save and sustain lives, minimize suffering and enhance safety.
"Early and accurate CO exposure detection is important for successful mitigation and treatment of carbon monoxide poisoning," stated Neil Hampson, MD, Medical Director, Center for Hyperbaric Medicine at the Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle, Washington. "The Rad-57 will allow FEMA's US&R teams to swiftly, thoroughly and easily assess and diagnose CO poisoning to increase their public safety efforts in the urban search and response environment."
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), carbon monoxide - a common, yet lethal poison produced whenever any carbon-based fuel, such as gas, oil, kerosene, wood, or charcoal is burned - presents a significant two-fold risk during a disaster when "chemicals are most commonly released from businesses and industries, storage tanks, agricultural facilities and homes," and "when power outages occur, the use of alternative sources of fuel or electricity cause CO to build up." The most common symptoms of CO poisoning are headache, dizziness, weakness, nausea, vomiting, chest pain, and confusion, while high levels of CO inhalation can cause loss of consciousness and death. Unless suspected, CO poisoning can be difficult to diagnose because the symptoms mimic other illnesses.
Joe Kiani, Founder and CEO of Masimo, stated, "When elevated CO levels are present, disaster often strikes a second time, placing victims and their brave, unsuspecting rescuers in grave jeopardy. This is now a preventable disaster for rescuers and victims alike with Masimo Rad-57 in action on the front lines of U.S. disaster search and rescue efforts."
Masimo (NASDAQ: MASI) develops innovative monitoring technologies that significantly improve patient care - helping solve "unsolvable" problems. In 1995, the company debuted Measure-Through Motion and Low-Perfusion pulse oximetry, known as Masimo SET(R), which virtually eliminated false alarms and increased pulse oximetry's ability to detect life-threatening events. More than 100 independent and objective studies demonstrate Masimo SET provides the most reliable SpO2 and pulse rate measurements even under the most challenging clinical conditions, including patient motion and low peripheral perfusion. In 2005, Masimo introduced Masimo Rainbow SET(R) Pulse CO-Oximetry(TM), a breakthrough noninvasive blood constituent monitoring platform that can measure many blood constituents that previously required invasive procedures. Masimo Rainbow SET continuously and noninvasively measures total hemoglobin (SpHb(TM)), oxygen content (SpOC(TM)), carboxyhemoglobin (SpCO(R)), methemoglobin (SpMet(R)), and PVI(TM), in addition to oxyhemoglobin (SpO2), pulse rate (PR), and perfusion index (PI), allowing early detection and treatment of potentially life-threatening conditions. Founded in 1989, Masimo has the mission of "Improving Patient Outcomes and Reducing Cost of Care by Taking Noninvasive Monitoring to New Sites and Applications." Additional information about Masimo and its products may be found at www.masimo.com.
Forward Looking Statements
This press release includes forward-looking statements as defined in Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, in connection with the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are based on current expectations about future events affecting us and are subject to risks and uncertainties, all of which are difficult to predict and many of which are beyond our control and could cause our actual results to differ materially and adversely from those expressed in our forward-looking statements as a result of various risk factors, including, but not limited to: risks related to our assumption that the Rad-57 will deliver a sufficient level of sensitivity and specificity for improved CO detection over alternative methods to facilitate rapid diagnosis and treatment in the urban search and rescue environment, risks related to our belief that prior positive results and clinical outcomes achieved by the Rad-57 will be repeated in future incidents, and as well as other factors discussed in the "Risk Factors" section of our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended January 3, 2009, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") on March 4, 2009, which may be obtained for free at the SEC's website at www.sec.gov. Although we believe that the expectations reflected in our forward-looking statements are reasonable, we do not know whether our expectations will prove correct. All forward-looking statements included in this press release are expressly qualified in their entirety by the foregoing cautionary statements. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of today's date. We do not undertake any obligation to update, amend or clarify these forward-looking statements or the "Risk Factors" contained in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended January 3, 2009, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as may be required under the applicable securities laws.
Contact: Dana Banks Masimo Corporation 949-297-7348
Masimo, SET, Signal Extraction Technology, Improving Outcomes and Reducing Cost of Care by Taking Noninvasive Monitoring to New Sites and Applications, Rainbow, SpHb, SpOC, SpCO, SpMet, PVI, Radical-7, Rad-87, Rad-57, Rad-9, Rad-8, Rad-5, Pulse CO-Oximetry and Pulse CO-Oximeter are trademarks or registered trademarks of Masimo Corporation. Other trademarks used herein are the property of their respective owners.
NOTE TO REPORTERS AND EDITORS:
The CDC case report, titled: "Carbon Monoxide Kills Three Volunteer Firefighters Inside Well in Pennsylvania," available online at: http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/face/In-house/full9030.html, illustrates the significant tragedy and inherent risks associated with rescue attempts in confined or poorly ventilated area where dangerously elevated CO levels are present.
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