Help support the launch of a new test that diagnoses infants with HIV in <1 hour! Our goal is 25K tests in 10 developing countries in 2014!

Approximately 1.4 million infants are born to HIV-infected women each year, the majority of whom are not tested for HIV or do not receive test results until it is too late for optimal treatment. Without treatment, the mortality rate in HIV-infected infants can be as high as 45% by their first birthday, and 59% by the second.

The tests currently available are expensive and require electricity, refrigeration, and skilled lab technicians. Our research has shown that testing conducted in centralized laboratories located in capital cities can take several months to return from the rural environments where the blood sample was collected. This is largely due to poor access to roads required to get blood samples to and from the laboratory and the patient to and from the clinic. These technical hurdles not only limit access for untested populations but also delay the initiation of treatment for infants who test positive.

In light of these challenges, the Northwestern Global Health Foundation (NWGHF) is supporting the development and launch of a new test that is affordable (~$7-15 per test; ~$400 - $700 for equipment), portable (runs several weeks of tests on one charge), and easy-to-use (by community health care worker). More importantly, the test reduces the time a mother must wait for a result from several months to < 40 minutes.

By donating to NWGHF, you will help us achieve our goal of piloting the test in 10 African and Asian countries in the next year. This translates into 25,000 babies tested in ~200 facilities in Year 1. By Year 5, we expect this number to reach 300,000 babies tested in ~1,000 facilities per year. We are seeking funds to achieve these targets and are asking for you to help us raise $500K.

These funds will allows us to:

  • Complete the development of the device. We are 95% complete, but we want to place a modem in the machine to alert the surveillance and supply chain when a test has been run and what the result was. We also want to add a cooler to the device so that test results are accurate up to 45 degrees Celsius.
  • Provide sufficient working capital. We will need to pay our suppliers up to 6 months before we get paid by governments and NGOs for the tests they purchase.
  • Invest in efficient manufacturing equipment. To minimize per test and per device costs, we must make an investment in efficient manufacturing equipment.

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