Wal-Mart sponsors cholesterol screening

Cholestech Corporation of Hayward, CA, and Health Management Systems of Richardson, TX, have signed a two-year, $2 million deal to provide cholesterol tests to individual consumers at certain Wal-Mart stores across the United States.

The testing will take place only at "advertised dates and times." On those dates, consumers will be tested in the store by trained screeners, advised about their personal risk of heart disease, and possibly told to follow up with their primary care physician.

Cholestech’s LDX testing system takes about five minutes and produces results that Cholestech claims are as accurate as cholesterol tests performed in clinical laboratories. The system uses a single drop of whole blood to provide a full lipid panel of total cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein (HDL), low-density lipoprotein (LDL), triglycerides, glucose levels, and risk factors. So far, it’s the only point-of-care, multi-analyte system to be granted a waiver by the federal government, allowing it to be operated by someone without specific medical training.

The system is currently in use at selected Wal-Mart stores in Florida.

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