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The International Society for Infectious Diseases Joins Forces with TheraSim to implement Computer-Based Clinical Simulation Training for HIV and Other Infectious Diseases.

Business Editors

BOSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Feb. 10, 2004

The International Society for Infectious Diseases (ISID), the 17 year-old non-profit organization comprised of 30,000 infectious disease physicians and allied health care professionals dedicated to improving clinical care and training opportunities in infectious diseases globally, announced today that it will begin using a new web- and client-based clinical training simulator to help train clinicians and health care providers as part of the Society's on-going HIV training and outreach educational programs worldwide. The clinical simulation tool was developed by TheraSim(R), the leading developer of disease training simulation technology, and will be used to educate health care providers in the diagnosis and management of HIV/AIDS.

The ISID and TheraSim announced plans to launch an International Infectious Disease Clinician Training Center based on the TheraSim(R) clinical simulation system (TheraSim CS(R)). The initial goal in implementing this system will be to more efficiently and effectively address the critical global shortage of HIV-trained physicians, physicians' assistants, nurses and other health care providers particularly in resource-poor settings devastated by the global HIV pandemic.

Timothy Brewer, M.D., Program Director for Boston-based ISID commented, "With the help of our partners at leading medical institutions, the Society has been training physicians from many different countries in the effective treatment of HIV for years. Though this program is very successful, the traditional training methods we employ are not able to expand the cadre of HIV-ready clinicians at the pace required to meet the demands of the epidemic on an international scale. To meet the global need for qualified HIV care providers in the near future, it is essential that new training tools and methods be developed. Electronic-based training programs have the potential to dramatically increase the number of clinicians who may be trained at the same time and with substantially less cost. The TheraSim diagnostic and treatment simulation software is an exciting opportunity to set a training standard in HIV heretofore unattainable on a large scale."

David D. Hadden, President and CEO of TheraSim, was also reached for comment: "We are thrilled to be a part of the ISID's commitment to expand its training efforts and to leverage the TheraSim simulation training aids as an immediate solution to a major bottleneck in antiretroviral therapy delivery in the developing world. No matter how much money is spent on HIV medication assistance in these beleaguered countries, there are simply not enough trained clinicians to deliver the therapy."

Charles Coleman, Ph.D., TheraSim's COO, pointed out that the developing world is faced with critical shortages of clinicians trained in infectious disease such as HIV and TB. "The World Health Organization has a goal of delivering life-sustaining anti-HIV therapy to 3 million of the 40 million people infected with HIV by the year 2004," he said. "Today, however, less than 250,000 patients have access to trained staff." In addressing the need in the U.S, he stated: "While the need for this low-cost training system in the developing world is obvious, it was designed to make a difference in the U.S. and Europe as well. A recent study by the American Medical Association showed that 58% of family practice residents felt 'unprepared' for providing HIV/AIDS care--a disturbing conclusion when you consider that the rate of new HIV infection is increasing in the U.S."

TheraSim's ASP- and client-based medical simulation technology was developed to dramatically increase global clinical capacity to treat people with HIV, TB, Diabetes and other diseases. The underlying technology is comprised of a complex array of "real world" clinician-patient encounters that--when used in conjunction with a formal teaching curriculum--helps to guide the user through "best practices" diagnostic and treatment interactions and treatment scenarios.

"Our first simulation module is in HIV, arguably one of the more complex diseases to treat," Mr. Hadden said. "We also have TB, diabetes mellitus, and hepatitis in production and due for release in the spring of 2004. We look forward to supporting the efforts of The International Society for Infectious Diseases and we are working closely with them to develop and implement a scalable and sustainable training capability in the diagnoses and treatment for all of the major infectious diseases."

About the International Society for Infectious Diseases

The International Society for Infectious Diseases (ISID) is a professional organization with a global membership of physicians, scientists, microbiologists and public health officials committed to improving knowledge and practices in the care of patients with infectious diseases, research in infectious diseases and microbiology, and the prevention and control of infectious diseases around the world. The Society recognizes that infectious diseases cross all national and regional boundaries, and that effective long-term solutions require international exchange and cooperation. ISID and its members are dedicated to developing partnerships and to finding solutions to the problem of infectious diseases across the globe.

The main goals of the ISID are to increase the knowledge base of infectious diseases through research and to enhance the professional development of the individual in this discipline; to extend and transfer technical expertise in microbiology and infectious diseases; and to develop, through partnerships, strategies for control and cost-effective management of infectious diseases.

About TheraSim, Inc.

Reach More. Teach More. Save More.(TM) TheraSim(R) was formed in December, 2002, to rapidly expand global clinical capacity through medical simulation, decision support and patient adherence tools. By leveraging TheraSim's medical intelligence technology and interactive knowledgeware, educators, practitioners, and patients can more efficiently and effectively communicate and manage treatment and therapies at every level of clinical care from initial diagnoses and treatment to aiding patients in adhering to their own therapy.

TheraSim CS applications augment clinical training and decision support in diagnosing and treating a variety of diseases in less time and at far less cost than conventional teaching and training methodologies. TheraSim CS is the first application which leverages a one-to-many, interactive approach to training by combining clinical databases and didactic curriculum with real-world patient encounters and proficiency scoring which has been written and designed by the world's leading clinicians, and presented to the end-user in an intelligent and intuitive interface.

If "practice makes perfect," then TheraSim's Clinical Simulator (and its array of disease-specific modules) turns that old adage into a new reality by assisting medical educators in meeting the global demand for clinicians trained in infectious and chronic diseases while also enabling patients to take better care of themselves.
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Date:Feb 10, 2004
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