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The Load Zero Foundation To Provide Viral Load Testing for Partners In Health

Leading HIV testing non-profit to work with Partners In Health to help improve effectiveness HIV/AIDS treatment in the world’s neediest areas.

New York – 11/1/14 — Load Zero Foundation (LZF), a not-for-profit foundation (501(c)3) with the mission to provide high-quality, low-cost viral load testing specifically designed for HIV+ patients in resource limited settings announced today that it has signed an agreement to provide Partners In Health (PIH) – one of the most respected providers of health care to poor and underserved communities around the world – with viral load test equipment and support. 

The program will begin at the PIH Hospital Saint Marc in Haiti where the Load Zero Foundation (LZF) will facilitate the training of PIH staff, provide the necessary lab equipment and the test assay necessary for the program. PIH will administer the tests and use them to help better treat and improve the lives of HIV patients.

“We are honored to be working with Partners In Health and looking forward to providing their dedicated professionals with the equipment, training and test kits desperately needed to better manage the disease in HIV+ patients in their hospitals.” said Tony Kuhn, Executive Director of the Load Zero Foundation. “This is so important because research shows that this simple and inexpensive viral load testing along with proper treatment can save millions of lives, billions of dollars and help slow the spread of this horrific disease by as much as 96%.”

With 35 million people infected worldwide, HIV remains the world’s leading causes of infectious diseases. And while highly effective combinations of treatments have emerged; antiretroviral therapy (ART) is now the foundation of effective treatment, there are many different types and sub-types of HIV. Effective ART treatment requires that the right combinations of drugs are used to achieve the best outcomes. Selecting the right combination of drugs for a patient and monitoring with a companion diagnostic saves lives, improves quality of life and reduces the total cost of care; measuring viral load in HIV patients is the key to accomplishing these goals.

Because viral load testing has traditionally required expensive equipment and access to modern infrastructure, it was not accessible to the majority of HIV+ population. Making a high-quality low-cost viral load test available to PIH will result in a reduction of unnecessary loss of life, human suffering while lowering the cost of care and loss of productivity to parts of the world that need help most.

“We are very excited to be working with the Load Zero Foundation and benefitting from their knowledge and equipment to better serve the people of Haiti. This critical partnership will help us continue to bring the fruits of modern medical science to those most in need of them and to serve as an antidote to despair.” said Ophelia Dahl, Executive Director of Partners In Health.

About The Load Zero Foundation

The Load Zero Foundation (LZF) is the world's only philanthropic organization specifically dedicated to funding low cost viral load testing for millions of HIV patients. Our mission is to help end the devastation brought on by HIV around world. The foundation funds viral load tests designed for low technology laboratories to measure all HIV types and subtypes active in these regions through donations. In addition to the Viral Load test, the LZF funds laboratory equipment, technical training, and infrastructure to support viral load testing where HIV is most prevalent and resources are exceptionally limited. The LZF is truly unique in that we've negotiated deep discounts and matching donations with suppliers of tests and lab equipment; these discounts are achievable because of the LZF purchasing power and volume discounts; making it possible for the LZF to create fully equipped “lab in a box” for new viral load testing facilities for around $20k each or less than 10% of the traditional costs of a viral load testing lab. 

Further information is available on the foundation’s website, http://www.loadzerofoundation.org.

About Partners In Health (http://www.pih.org/)

PIH works in 10 countries around the world to provide quality health care to people and communities devastated by joint burdens of poverty and disease. Our mission is to provide a preferential option for the poor in health care. By establishing long-term relationships with sister organizations based in settings of poverty, Partners In Health strives to achieve two overarching goals: to bring the benefits of modern medical science to those most in need of them and to serve as an antidote to despair.

PIH and its Haitian partner organization, Zanmi Lasante, have been providing vital health care services in Haiti for more than 25 years and are the largest health care providers in the country, working with the Haitian Ministry of Health to deliver comprehensive health care services to a catchment area of 1.2 million across the Central Plateau and the Lower Artibonite Valley. For more information please visit http://www.pih.org/haiticonf.