Ron Ticho - Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications
Douglas A. Michels - President and Chief Executive Officer
Ervin Magic Johnson - Founder, Magic Johnson Foundation
OraSure Technologies, Inc. (OSUR) OraQuick In-Home HIV Test Conference call October 10, 2012 3:00 PM ET
Good afternoon. My name is Dawn and I will be your conference operator today. At this time, I would like to welcome everyone to the OraQuick In-Home HIV Test webcast and conference call. All lines have been placed on mute to prevent any background noise. After the speakers' remarks there will be a question-and-answer session. (Operator Instructions).
Thank you. Mr. Ron Ticho, Senior Vice President for Corporate Communications at OraSure Technologies, you may begin your conference, sir.
Thank you very much, Dawn, and thank you very much to all of the members of the media who have joined us this afternoon for today's call. I am very pleased to introduce to start this call with remarks, Mr. Douglas A. Michels, our President and CEO of OraSure Technologies and with him is incomparable Magic Johnson as well. Thank you, Doug.
Thank you, Ron, and good afternoon, everyone. I want to thank you very much for joining us on this afternoon's webcast and conference all. The purpose of our call this afternoon is to provide you with some additional information regarding the OraQuick In-Home HIV Test which is now the first and only over-the-counter rapid HIV test which is now available at retailers nationwide.
We at OraSure Technologies are just so excited about this opportunity and we believe that the OraQuick In-Home HIV Test represents truly a tremendous breakthrough in the fight against HIV and AIDS. Our OraQuick In-Home HIV Test is the only over-the-counter rapid test that can detect antibodies to HIV-1 and 2 with an oral mouth swab in just 20 minutes. So for the first time ever individuals will be able to use the same test that healthcare professionals have used and trusted for years and this will empower them to learn their HIV status in the comfort and privacy of their own home.
Our test is now available nationwide at more than 30,000 drug stores and mass retailers as well as online through select retailers like cvs.com and at oraquick.com, our own private branded website. I think many of you know that the CDC estimates that approximately 1.2 million people in the United States are infected with HIV and approximately 240,000 or about 20% of them are unaware of their status.
Those that are infected and unaware are disproportionately responsible for the 50,000 new HIV infections that occur each year and they are unknowingly responsible for the spread of this disease and our hope is that with the availability of the OraQuick In-Home HIV Test, that we make a significant impact on the reduction in the spread of HIV AIDS here in the United States.
To ensure optimal support for those consumers who had used the OraQuick In-Home HIV Test, we are providing specialized resources including live support and comprehensive referral services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, everyday of the year through a toll-free support center and comprehensive consumer website. The OraQuick support center is staffed with highly trained bilingual representatives who are available by telephone to answer questions about HIV AIDS and the use and interpretation of the test.
These representatives can also provide referrals to follow-up care and they can take orders for the OraQuick In-Home HIV Test and additionally the product website on oraquick.com provides access to resources to and referrals to follow up counseling, confirmatory testing and importantly medical care.
Many of you know OraSure is the leader in infectious disease point-of-care diagnostics. In 2002, we developed the first FDA approved rapid HIV test for use with the fingertip blood sample into the professional market and in 2004, the FDA granted us FDA approval to use that very same test with an oral sample. In 2011, we developed and launched the first FDA approved and CLIA-waived rapid test for Hepatitis C on the same OraQuick platform and today, we stand, actually we sit proudly as the first to launch a rapid HIV test direct to consumers.
To recognize this important advancement, OraSure is extremely pleased to collaborate with someone as iconic as Magic Johnson, who is a hero and role model for his many accomplishments, not the least of which are his educational and philanthropic contributions through the Magic Johnson Foundation and other causes. He is an acknowledged leader in the fight against HIV and AIDS and we have the pleasure of collaborating with Magic on an educational campaign to address the importance of everyone knowing their HIV status.
In addition to media appearances this week, Magic will be working with us through 2013 to continue spreading the word that knowing your HIV status is not only the best thing, it's everyone's' thing and Magic will speak in a few moments. We have had just a wonderful day this afternoon with whole host of additional advocates, people who played an important role in educating the public about this important development.
With that, let me turn the mic over to Ervin Magic Johnson and I thank you very much for supporting us.
Ervin Magic Johnson
Thank you. Well, first of all, welcome everybody and I am so excited after announcing my HIV status 21 years ago, being HIV positive, the HIV and AIDS community were looking for a face of the disease and I became that face and that was able to raise the awareness level and we were then able to really reach out and educate a lot of people around the world about HIV and AIDS.
Everybody was talking about it 21 years ago and I think we were able to make great strides. 21 years ago, there was only one drug. Now, there are over 30 drugs to take care of people who living with HIV, which is what is really remarkable.
Now, here comes an in-home kit by OraSure and its called OraQuick and this is the game changer we have been looking for when you think about the fight against HIV and AIDS because there are so many people have a fear of going to the doctor, people go into a HIV and AIDS clinic and didn’t want to get their test done there.
Now, they can do it in their own home. They can be comfortable in their own home and at the same time they can get a test for HIV and AIDS and the results back in 20 minutes and I think that’s remarkable. So that’s why I joined OraSure because of the fact that this was missing for us in the HIV and AIDS fight. We feel now more people will get tested and they will understand that yes, they are HIV positive.
Right in the kit we have (inaudible) for them to call the 1-800 number that Doug talked about. There is a (inaudible) to tell them and explain to them what their new status will mean to them in terms of being HIV positive now and then at the end of the day, they now can go to a doctor or to a healthcare provider and get on meds right away like I did because early detection saved my life and early detection for the people that we are talking about, it can save their lives too.
The people who are walking around who are living with HIV and don’t know it is hurting our communities because they are infecting people all over the world and all over the country. We want to them to know their status even though this is really important so that they can live a long and healthy life if they get on a regimen if they get a healthcare provider if they get a doctor and that’s what we are talking about here.
So again, this is excitement in the HIV and AIDS community and I think this is now going to now people out to get tested in their own home or in their business or they can do it right in their car. They don’t have to be by themselves. They can have a girlfriend. They can have family members take the test with them. So they don’t have to feel like if they are HIV positive, they won't be by themselves. So this is a game changer. So, thank you.
Dawn, we are now ready to take questions if there are any.
(Operator Instructions).There are no audio questions at this time.
Ervin Magic Johnson
Hello, is that Dawn?
Yes, sir, my name is Dawn.
Ervin Magic Johnson
Dawn, can I just add that the incredible stigma that we have had in the Latino and African-American community about going to get a test because we are such private people. This OraQuick HIV AIDS kit is going to be so important through our community and I think that when you think of African-Americans and Latinos, we make up over 50% of all the new cases as far as HIV and AIDS. So I know that with this incredible kit more of the black and brown community will get tested and I think that’s really important because of the stigma behind HIV and AIDS in our community.
Dawn, seeing that there aren’t any questions, I think we will conclude the webcast.
Yes, I really like to thank you all again for being on the call this afternoon and giving us your time and I want to thank everyone who has been with us through this whole process now including Ervin Magic Johnson. We have a lot of work to do but we firmly believe this is going to be a valuable tool and the fight against HIV and AIDS to reduce incidents to help people who are infected know their status, get connected to care and I just want to thank you all again. Have a good afternoon everyone.
Ervin Magic Johnson
Have a good afternoon.
And this concludes today's OraQuick In-Home HIV Test webcast and conference call. You may now disconnect.