Trend Continues as BlueCross BlueShield of Louisiana Retires Negative FeNO Medical Policy
SOLNA, Sweden - 7 May, 2012 - Aerocrine AB (OMX Nordic Exchange: AERO) announces that BlueCross BlueShield of Louisiana has retired its negative coverage medical policy for FeNO testing. The policy change became effective May 3, 2012.
On May 3, 2012, BlueCross BlueShield of Louisiana retired their negative coverage policy regarding Aerocrine’s asthma device which measures Fractional exhaled Nitric Oxide (FeNO) in asthmatics. BlueCross BlueShield of Louisiana is the largest insurance company in the state and provides coverage to approximately 71 percent of the privately insured or approximately 1.3 million lives. With this and other recent private payer coverage changes, FeNO coverage in the state of Louisiana is projected at over 88 percent.
"Nitric oxide measurement helps physicians better assess and manage patients with allergic airway inflammation. FeNO testing allows physicians to more accurately identify patients who will respond to inhaled corticosteroids and even patients we can safely consider decreasing the doses of asthma controller medications," said Peter Boggs, MD of the Asthma-Allergy Clinic & Research Center and Departments of Pediatrics and Medicine, LSU Health Science Center in Shreveport, Louisiana. “This is a tremendous victory for patients and physicians and will have a positive effect on thousands of patients across Louisiana. No two asthma patients are the same and FeNO testing enables us to choose the best treatments for individual patients.”
Asthma is a chronic inflammatory disease of the airways characterized by symptoms including wheezing and difficulty in breathing. Asthma is one of this world’s most common and costly diseases, affecting 8 -10 percent of the population and costing over $50B annually in the U.S. alone. The disease has no cure and proper diagnosis and management of the disease are key to physicians effectively keeping the disease under control.
“Aerocrine’s NIOX MINO® FeNO monitor is a simple 2 minute test that provides valuable information, said Ken Marshall, President of Aerocrine, Inc. “With the formal recognition and support of the American Thoracic Society Guideline on the interpretation and clinical use of FeNO by the American College and American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, payers are seeing this test as a way to improve clinical management of asthma patients in a very cost effective way It’s all about the right medication, for the right patient at the right time.”
For more information, contact:
Scott Myers, President & CEO, Aerocrine AB, Phone: +46 768 788 379
Ken Marshall, President, Aerocrine Inc., telephone +1 (919) 280 9687
Kathy Hodgdon, Director of sales & marketing, Aerocrine Inc., telephone +1 (314) 566 8546
Aerocrine AB is a medical technology company focused on the improved management and care of patients with inflammatory airway diseases. As the pioneer and leader in the technology to monitor and manage airway inflammation, Aerocrine markets NIOX® Flex and NIOX MINO®. Both products enable fast and reliable management of airway inflammation and may therefore play a critical role in more effective diagnosis, treatment and follow-up of patients with inflammatory airway diseases such as asthma. Aerocrine is based in Sweden with subsidiaries in the US, Germany and the UK. Aerocrine shares were listed on the Stockholm Stock Exchange on 15 June 2007. Aerocrine discloses the information provided herein pursuant to the Securities Markets Act and/or the Financial Instruments Trading Act. The information was submitted for publication at 08:00 a.m. on May 7, 2012.