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PointCare Donates Diagnostic Tests to Haitian Clinics to Ensure Resumption of Critical HIV/AIDS Patient Care and Bolster Emergency Medical Treatment for Earthquake Victims
Date:2/23/2010

MARLBOROUGH, Mass., Feb. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- PointCare Technologies, pioneer inventor of a portable diagnostic system that enables effective HIV/AIDS monitoring for millions of people in remote areas of developing countries, has donated 4,000 (a month's supply) of its rapid PointCare NOW tests to Haitian clinics to ensure the resumption of critical care to HIV/AIDS patients. The test delivers two categories of diagnostic results simultaneously: CD4 absolute count and CD4%, combined with hematology profiling for HIV monitoring and as an aid in diagnosing infection and active tuberculosis. The test runs on the company's FDA-cleared, portable PointCare NOW instrument, which operates on battery power, requires no refrigeration of reagents, and enables rapid, sophisticated field testing. In order to help address the vast need for critical emergency care following the earthquake, the company also included in the donation 4,000 rapid hematology tests to be used on its PointCare NOW instrument.

"Since 2006, our PointCare NOW systems have been used successfully in Haiti to initiate and monitor anti-retroviral therapy (ART) for thousands of HIV/AIDS patients – we've had systems in 22 individual clinics, most of them in the greater Point-au-Prince area," said Michael Cohen, senior advisor to the PointCare chairman. "We're a very small company with limited resources, but when we heard from the people on the ground in Haiti that they couldn't resume patient care because supply was not getting through, we loaded up two pallets of test kits, and sent them off to our Haitian distributor, Reinbold Import & Export, who has delivered them to clinics free of charge."

Mr. Cohen continued, "We are inspired by the amazing work our partners are doing to assist with medical relief operations in Haiti. For example, every day Reinbold was driving a small convoy to Haiti's border with the Dominican Republic (a city called Jimani) to take the most seriously injured for treatment in the D.R. and to bring back clinical testing reagents, sutures, orthopedic devices, surgical materials, and many other donated products. In another example, the University of Maryland's Institute for Human Virology – which uses the PointCare NOW system in Haiti to deliver important HIV/AIDs services – has been sending emergency surgical teams to operate in a 'tent' hospital since soon after the quake. Reports of their experiences and others like them led to our donation of the hematology tests. Complete blood count (CBC), hemoglobin, and the other hematology tests are critical to identifying infections, anemia, and active TB. But many of the traditional hematology systems in Haiti, designed for use in clean, temperature-controlled conditions, have become unusable in the current environment. In some settings, our rugged PointCare NOW system has become the best option for stand-alone hematology testing."

About the PointCare NOW™ system

A daily cocktail of anti-retroviral therapy drugs can slow dramatically the development of HIV/AIDS. However, regular, repeated CD4/CD4% testing in HIV-infected individuals (examining the CD4 cells, also known as T-helper cells, in the blood) is essential – first to determine when ART should be initiated and then to ensure that the treatment remains safe and effective. The PointCare NOW system is the first and only true point-of-care diagnostic instrument for monitoring CD4/CD4% and hematology parameters in HIV/AIDS patients. Rugged, compact, and designed to go anywhere to meet the needs of patients in decentralized and low-resource settings – the PointCare NOW system improves availability, accessibility, and affordability of high-quality HIV/AIDS monitoring. Operated by a nurse or phlebotomist, the transforming power of the PointCare NOW lies in its ability to do three things:

  1. Move CD4 and hematology testing out of laboratories and into clinics for near-patient services
  2. Provide immediate results in eight minutes – for testing and treatment in a single visit
  3. Provide comprehensive results – T-cell subset depletion, anemia, and abnormal white cell differentials are all reported on the spot for improved clinical management including an indication for active tuberculosis

It does this by addressing the key constraints in remote settings:

  • Full automation – no manual steps
  • Flexible power options – any electrical power, rechargeable battery (solar option)
  • Heat-stable reagents with no refrigeration required
  • Everything needed for testing in one box

About PointCare Technologies Inc. (www.pointcare.net)

PointCare Technologies is one of America's leading companies in the worldwide effort to treat patients that are current living with HIV/AIDS. This privately held, FDA-registered, ISO-certified medical diagnostics company invents, develops, manufactures, and markets medical diagnostic products. PointCare brings diagnostic capabilities to resource-limited urban and rural regions, enabling immediate identification and treatment of infectious diseases by healthcare professionals.

SOURCE PointCare Technologies Inc.

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SOURCE PointCare Technologies Inc.
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