News | November 07, 2006

Haemonetics Launches Automated, Self-Regulating Surgical Suction Device in U.S.

Haemonetics Corp. announced the launch of its SmartSuction Solo premium surgical suction system in the U.S. market. The new product's design enhances a surgeon's ability to clear fluids from the surgical field by providing high air flow and self-regulating suction.

Tom Lawlor, President of Haemonetics' Patient Division, said, "The SmartSuction Solo system is the first product that Haemonetics will sell into the general surgery market, expanding our market opportunity by an incremental $240 million. This is an exciting milestone in our efforts to expand from a surgical blood salvage company into a broader blood management company."

Surgeons require the good visibility and fast clearance of the surgical field provided by the SmartSuction Solo system to operate effectively. In fact, the system design addresses the unique needs of the surgeon and other members of the operating team that existing wall suction systems cannot satisfy. The product self-regulates, freeing valuable operator time; it stands alone, ensuring consistent vacuum and air flow levels not subject to fluctuations created by demand from other operating rooms; and, it has a small, portable footprint for minimal intrusion in the surgical suite.

"This technology can significantly contribute to surgical practice, making it easier for operating teams to manage a surgery," said Mr. Lawlor.

The SmartSuction Solo system entered customer acceptance trials in Europe in July, 2006. Initial customer response is positive. The system received 510(k) marketing clearance by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in early October 2006 and is now in customer acceptance trials in the U.S.

The SmartSuction Solo system is the third system developed by Haemonetics under the SmartSuction family of products. Haemonetics acquired the technology from Harvest Technologies Corporation in August of 2004. The Company leveraged its core competency in manufacturing process management to better position the products for global market launch.

Earlier this year, Haemonetics launched a related suction product, the SmartSuction HARMONY(TM) surgical suction system. The SmartSuction Harmony system operates like the SmartSuction Solo system, but is used in surgeries assisted by surgical cell salvage. (The Solo system can be used in all surgeries.) The SmartSuction HARMONY system addresses about a $45 million market.

The second product launched by Haemonetics from its SmartSuction technologies acquisition was a specialty filter bag that entered customer acceptance trials last quarter. The filter bag is a product line extension with worldwide market potential of $15-$20 million. Haemonetics is continuing development work on future products from the SmartSuction technologies acquisition.

For more information, on the SmartSuction Solo system, visit Haemonetics' website at http://www.haemonetics.com/site/content/km/factSheet.asp.

Haemonetics (NYSE:HAE) is a global company engaged in the design, manufacture and worldwide marketing of automated blood processing systems. These systems address important medical markets: surgical blood salvage, blood component collection, plasma collection, and blood component safety. To learn more about Haemonetics' products and markets, visit its web site at http://www.haemonetics.com/.

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