HEALTHCARE equipment company Medical Corporation Australasia, through its 81.2 per cent subsidiary ObjectiVision, has signed a distribution agreement for the US and Canada with Heidelberg Engineering.
The distribution agreement is for the company’s AccuMap machine that is used in the detection and management of glaucoma and other sight-threatening conditions.
The distribution agreement allows the AccuMap to be sold via an established ophthalmic sales force to the world’s largest market where eye specialists estimate there are one to 1.5 million people with undiagnosed glaucoma.
For example, rhythm and blues legend Ray Charles lost his sight due to glaucoma.
The Heidelberg distribution agreement follows from the US Food and Drug Administration decision to grant marketing approval that allows AccuMap to be sold in the US and approval from US Medicare to reimburse the AccuMap test at $US70 a test – the highest level for this diagnosis.
ObjectiVision CEO John Newton said the FDA clearance had generated a significant profile for the company.
“THE FDA clearance, combined with the finalisation of our marketing agreement with Heidleberg, positions AccuMap as one of the great potential export successes of Australian-designed technology,” he said.
“The link-up between Heidelberg and ObjectiVision represents an ideal positioning for both companies, providing leadership in both structural and functional detection of glaucoma and associated eye diseases.”
Mr Newton said there were 20,000 ophtalmologists and 30,000 optometrists in the US who now had “a major incentive to purchase an AccuMap on the basis of the reimbursement funding arrangements agreed”.
Experts estimate there are more than four million glaucoma sufferers in the US.
Eye health experts agree that diseases such as glaucoma, which is one of the leading causes of blindness in the western world, can usually be treated successfully if discovered early enough.
During clinical trials in Australia and Britain the AccuMap accurately diagnosed sight abnormalities in more than 95 per cent of cases.
More than 50 per cent of glaucoma sufferers detected by AccuMap exhibited normal results with existing testing methods.
Mr Newton said the technology would now be “actively marketed” in the US.
“We will also be talking to Asian and European distributors who have also demonstrated keen interest in working with us,” he said.
“We have already commenced sales in Singapore and the US FDA approval has excited extensive international interest in this innovative patented technology.”
The board of Medical Corporation is made up of prominent Chinese businessman Simon Lee, highly regarded WA scientist Dr Eric Tan, Dimitri Bacopanos, James Chen and Rod Unsworth.
According to its financial report for the half-year ended June 30, revenues from ordinary activities were down 48 per cent to $214,000 and the net loss attributable to members increased 169 per cent to $783,000.
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