Hepatitis C Prevalence Among Professional Truck Drivers Is More Than Five Times Higher Than Other Americans
DALLAS, TX--(Marketwired - Aug 14, 2014) - The Healthy Trucking Association of America (HTAA), OraSure Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ: OSUR) and AbbVie today announced they have joined forces to launch Truckers Rolling Against Hepatitis C, a nationwide initiative to educate truck drivers about the hepatitis C virus (HCV) and encourage testing among this population. The campaign will kick off at The Great American Trucking Show (GATS) in Dallas on August 21-23, 2014 and will continue this fall with local HCV testing events across the country to test at-risk individuals and help prevent serious consequences from undiagnosed infection. AbbVie is a global, research-based biopharmaceutical company. OraSure is a leader in the fight against HCV and a pioneer and market leader in the development of point of care testing products for infectious diseases.
The Truckers Rolling Against Hepatitis C campaign comprises several key initiatives designed to engage drivers to get tested within their healthcare settings, including truck stop events, employer testing initiatives and clinics that serve the trucking community.
During GATS 2014, truck drivers will be invited to visit the Truckers Rolling Against Hepatitis C campaign booth, #23113, in the Health & Wellness Pavilion to receive healthcare education about HCV and get tested. Drivers will be offered testing with OraSure's OraQuick® HCV Rapid Test, the first and only rapid HCV test approved by the FDA that provides lab accurate results with a fingerstick blood sample in just 20 minutes.
"We are dedicated to helping our fellow drivers receive the most accurate information and care options to keep them healthy and providing for their families," said Bill Gordon, chief executive officer of The Healthy Trucking Association of America. "Together, working with AbbVie and OraSure, we are committed to helping educate drivers at tradeshows, terminals, truck-stops and wherever else they are to learn if they are at risk for this treatable disease."
About 5.2 million people in the U.S. have been exposed to or are infected with HCV1 and three out of four don't know they are infected.2-4 Baby boomers (adults born between 1945 and 1965) are five times more likely to have HCV than other adults, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.2 While 80 percent of patients infected with HCV experience no symptoms,5 the virus can still be detected in the blood. Symptoms of chronic HCV can take 30 years to develop and damage to the liver can silently occur during this time. When symptoms do appear, it is often a sign of advanced liver disease. Further progression of advanced liver cirrhosis can result in liver failure or liver cancer.6 There are approximately 3 million truck drivers employed in the United States7, and HCV has a significant impact on this population. The prevalence of HCV among professional truck drivers, many of whom are members of the baby boomer generation, is 8.5 percent8 -- more than five times higher than other Americans.
"It is our goal that the Truckers Rolling Against Hepatitis C campaign will increase screening on a broad scale for this at-risk population segment and enable them to receive care," said Douglas A. Michels, president and chief executive officer of OraSure Technologies. "Working with AbbVie, the Healthy Trucking Association of America and their wellness partners, we will be able to reach more professional drivers where they work and live, on our nation's highways."
To provide additional opportunities for testing, Rolling Strong, the trucking industry's acknowledged leader in driver wellness, has invited the Truckers Rolling Against Hepatitis Ccampaign to join its latest truck-stop wellness tour this fall. With ongoing support from Freightliner, and a fast-growing client-base within both the trucking and motor coach sectors, Rolling Strong is dedicated to helping drivers develop healthier lifestyle choices and alerting them to the serious health problems that negatively impact the life expectancy of professional drivers.
About the Healthy Trucking Association of America (HTAA)
The Healthy Trucking Association of America is a non-profit organization that works with other industry leading wellness organizations to deliver educational resources and programs to improve the health of professional drivers. The mission of the Healthy Trucking Association of America is promoted via multiple lines of communication, including representation at all major transportation trade shows, their annual Healthy Trucking Summit, an interactive website and participation on wellness tours. To learn how you can get involved with the Healthy Trucking Association of America please call 800-800-1198 or visit www.healthytruckingassociation.org.
About OraSure Technologies
OraSure Technologies is a leader in the development, manufacture and distribution of point of care diagnostic and collection devices and other technologies designed to detect or diagnose critical medical conditions. Its innovative products include rapid tests for the detection of antibodies to HIV and HCV at the point of care and tests for various drugs of abuse. The Company sells the OraQuick® In-Home HIV Test, the first and only rapid HIV test approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for sale to the consumer over-the-counter market in the U.S. In addition, the Company is a leading provider of oral fluid sample collection, stabilization and preparation products for molecular diagnostic applications. OraSure's portfolio of products is sold globally to various clinical laboratories, hospitals, clinics, community-based organizations and other public health organizations, research and academic institutions, distributors, government agencies, physicians' offices, and commercial and industrial entities. The Company's products enable healthcare providers to deliver critical information to patients, empowering them to make decisions to improve and protect their health. For more information on OraSure Technologies, please visit www.orasure.com.
AbbVie is a global, research-based biopharmaceutical company formed in 2013 following separation from Abbott Laboratories. The company's mission is to use its expertise, dedicated people and unique approach to innovation to develop and market advanced therapies that address some of the world's most complex and serious diseases. AbbVie employs approximately 25,000 people worldwide and markets medicines in more than 170 countries. For further information on the company and its people, portfolio and commitments, please visit www.abbvie.com. Follow @abbvie on Twitter or view careers on our Facebook or LinkedIn page.
1. Chak E, Talal AH, Sherman KE, Schiff ER, Saab S. Hepatitis C infection in the USA: an estimate of true prevalence. Liver Int. 2011;31:1090-1101.
2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Recommendation for the identification of chronic hepatitis C virus infection among persons born during 1945-1965. MMWR. 2012;61(4):1-34. http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/rr6104a1.htm. Accessed July 2014.
3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Vital signs: hepatitis C. http://www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns/pdf/2013-05-vitalsigns.pdf. Accessed July 2014.
4. Institute of Medicine. Hepatitis and Liver Cancer: A National Strategy for Prevention of Hepatitis B and C. Washington, DC: National Academies Press; 2010.
5. World Health Organization. Hepatitis C Fact Sheet. 2014. http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs164/en/. Accessed July 2014.
6. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Hepatitis C: General Information. 2010. http://www.cdc.gov/hepatitis/HCV/PDFs/HepCGeneralFactSheet.pdf. Accessed July 2014.
7. American Trucking Associations. Reports, Trends and Statistics. http://www.truckline.com/News_and_Information_Reports_Industry_Data.aspx. Accessed August 2014.
8. Valway, S DMD, MPH, et al. Risk Assessment and Screening for Sexually Transmitted Infections, HIV, and Hepatitis Virus Among Long-Distance Truck Drivers in New Mexico, 2004-2006. American Journal of Public Health 2009;99 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2759793/
Diana Van Leuven
Media Contact for Rolling Strong and HTAA
Van Leuven Communications
Phone: (800) 520-1834 x1
Zer0 to 5ive for OraSure Technologies