Lab Canada

Clinical and research programs to receive $530,000 funding

Quebec City, QC – Baxter, a maker of specialty therapeutics and medical products, has announced funding of more than $530,000 to support two clinical and research projects relating to hemophilia.

It is supporting the upgrade of a clinical registry created by the AHCDC to enable more efficient and real-time tracking of blood product use and reporting of adverse events by hemophilia patients. The registry, known as the Canadian Hemophilia Assessment and Resource Management System (CHARMS), is a computer software program used by the 24 hemophilia clinics across Canada that provide services for individuals with congenital bleeding disorders. CHARMS assists individual patient management and overall quality assurance, and supports the storage and analysis of data on blood product utilization at the clinic level. Baxter has contributed over $300,000 towards the upgrade of the registry.

“We are appreciative of Baxter for its continued support and partnership with AHCDC. The CHARMS registry is an indispensable component of our national blood products management system as the complexity of hemophilia care requires continuous data gathering, maintenance of that data in a retrievable form and comprehensive analysis. This critical upgrade will assist hemophilia clinics to maintain close relationships with the hemophilia population and to access detailed and accurate information to support quality hemophilia care,” says Dr Manuel Carcao, a physician with the Hospital For Sick Children, division of haemotology/oncology, in Toronto and president of the Association of Hemophilia Clinic Directors of Canada.

It is also funding a robotic device that enables increased testing of blood samples for known blood borne diseases at the Blood Borne Pathogens Surveillance Project (BBPSP) laboratory. With the robot, University of Alberta researchers have been able to double the number of blood samples processed each day for storage.

“Where we used to handle about 25 samples a day, we’re now processing more than 50 samples, and we anticipate being able to process more than 100 samples each day in the near future. With this increased capacity we can expand the program further and accept blood samples from more Canadians who depend on frequent blood transfusions, such as sickle cell anemia patients,” says Dr Bruce Ritchie, a professor in the University of Alberta division of hematology and the director of BBPSP.

Baxter partnered with researchers at the University of Alberta, contributing more than $235,000 to commission the robot. The BBPSP is sponsored by the Public Health Agency of Canada and AHCDC.

In addition to funding for CHARMS and the BBPSP robot, Baxter announced last year it would be the sole source of funding for the National Hemophilia Mutation Laboratory at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, for the next three years through a $375,000 grant. The laboratory, recognized throughout the world, provides state of the art genetic testing for hemophilia. This is of tremendous importance for family counselling and to help with the clinical management of hemophilia patients in determining effective therapy regimens.