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This summer has seen Roche Diagnostics driving the self-testing message nationwide. The CoaguNation bus wheels have been turning for the last 3 months, and it now reaches its final destination.

The CoaguNation Journey
- 92 days
- 2,408 miles
- 30 UK destinations
- 15 donations to the Children’s Heart Federation
- 1,414 visitors

A total of 1,414 people have hopped on board the CoaguNation Bus over the 91 days, to learn about how they can simply and safely check their own blood at home, as opposed to having to attend clinics at the hospital or GP surgery, allowing them more freedom and flexibility.

With over 1 million people in the UK on long-term warfarin[1] and this number set to increase by 10% year-on-year, due to the ageing population[2], the CoaguNation Bus Tour set out to provide information to patients on how they may be able to make the management of their condition easier, through self-testing.

The CoaguNation Bus Tour initiative has been sponsored by Roche Diagnostics, a pioneer in the development of monitoring systems for anticoagulation, in collaboration with the patient group AntiCoagulation Europe (ACE).

In conjunction with the CoaguNation Bus Tour, 15 CoaguChek XS self-testing monitors have been donated by Roche Diagnostics to the Children’s Heart Federation, and have been distributed to nominated children across the UK and Ireland.

The bus hosted the following features:

• A local anticoagulation nurse giving practical advice and educational demonstrations on how to use self-testing kits and answering any questions regarding warfarin medication and self-testing

• A local member of the patient group AntiCoagulation Europe providing first hand experience of self-testing

• Educational materials which visitors could take away from the event.

If you have missed the bus but would like to find out more about self-testing; call free on 0808 1007666 or visit www.onwarfarin.co.uk, for more information.

- Ends -

Anticoagulation – key facts

Oral anticoagulation therapy (OAT) refers to medicines prescribed to prevent the formation of clots in blood vessels and the chambers of the heart. Oral anticoagulants may be given to people with conditions that put them at high risk of stroke (e.g. atrial fibrillation, deep vein thrombosis, congenital heart problems etc.) or following injury or surgery (in particular, heart valve replacement). The most common OAT is warfarin.

• More than a million people in the UK are currently taking warfarin[1].

• This number is set to increase by 10% year-on-year[2] over the next decade due to the ageing population and an increase in the scope of the use of warfarin.

• There are many factors that can cause patients’ clotting levels to fluctuate (e.g. change in diet, travel and/ or physical activity). Therefore, all of these people need to have their warfarin monitored (INR monitoring) on a regular basis to minimise the risk of developing a clot or having a bleed.

• The need for regular monitoring can mean frequent trips to the hospital or doctor’s surgery for blood tests. This can be very disruptive and have a significant impact on patients’ quality of life.

• Self-testing allows people to monitor their blood themselves from home, at work or on holiday. They then call or email their healthcare professional with their results to receive advice on the correct dose of warfarin to take.

• Some people are also able to self-manage their condition, where they not only monitor but also adjust their dose of warfarin themselves.

About Roche and the Roche Diagnostics Division

Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Roche is one of the world’s leading research-focused healthcare groups in the fields of pharmaceuticals and diagnostics. As the world’s biggest biotech company and an innovator of products and services for the early detection, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases, the Group contributes on a broad range of fronts to improving people’s health and quality of life. Roche is the world leader in in-vitro diagnostics and drugs for cancer and transplantation, and is a market leader in virology. It is also active in other major therapeutic areas such as autoimmune diseases, inflammatory and metabolic disorders and diseases of the central nervous system. In 2007 sales by the Pharmaceuticals Division totalled 36.8 billion Swiss francs, and the Diagnostics Division posted sales of 9.3 billion francs. Roche has R&D agreements and strategic alliances with numerous partners, including majority ownership interests in Genentech and Chugai, and invested over 8 billion Swiss francs in R&D in 2007. Worldwide, the Group employs about 80,000 people. Additional information is available on the Internet at www.roche.com.

Roche’s Diagnostics Division offers a uniquely broad product portfolio and supplies a wide array of innovative testing products and services to researchers, physicians, patients, hospitals and laboratories world-wide. For further information, please visit our website at www.roche.com.

All trademarks used or mentioned in this release are legally protected by law.

References:

1.Based on an extrapolation of 2004 figures presented in Gardiner et al. Patient self-testing is a reliable and acceptable alternative to laboratory INR monitoring. British Journal of Haematology. 2004; 128: 242-247, and calculated from population data from the Office for National Statistics (www.statistics.gov.uk). Website last accessed August 2008.

2.Fitzmaurice DA et al. Self-management of oral anticoagulation: randomised trial. BMJ. 2005; 331(7524): 1057.

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