- Circle HealthPod is a Rapid Detection System for all infectious diseases, starting with Covid-19 and will include Flu and STDs in the future
- Technology developed at University of Oxford, with PCR quality results in 20 minutes
- Circle HealthPod, having received CE-IVD marking, is a reusable device with single-use capsules
- Prospective studies comparing Circle HealthPod to highly sensitive FDA-approved PCR laboratory tests showed 96% sensitivity and 99.9% specificity
- New World Development secures 10,000 Circle HealthPods and 60,000 capsules, with retail value of HK $16.49m, to be utilized across its extensive ecosystem
Circle HealthPod is the First Rapid Molecular Point of Care / At-Home Diagnostic Test to be Offered in Asia
HONG KONG, Aug. 10, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — New World Development and Prenetics Limited, a global leader in diagnostics and genetic testing, today jointly announce the launch of the Circle HealthPod – a rapid detection system providing PCR-quality results for COVID-19 at point of care or at home. The Circle HealthPod has received CE-IVD marking and will be implemented across New World Development’s extensive ecosystem.
The HealthPod uses a lower nasal swab and provides results to the individual’s smartphone or directly on the device in just 20 minutes. It is intended for use by both symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals aged two and over. Developed at the University of Oxford, the HealthPod is re-usable with single-use molecular capsules, offering convenience and the ability to test frequently with the accuracy of PCR laboratory tests.
The collaboration with New World Development instantly gives the HealthPod a vast footprint, with an initial order of 10,000 HealthPods and 60,000 capsules to be used across NWD’s extensive ecosystem of retail malls, office buildings, residential developments and art and cultural facilities which currently boasts over 14 million members in Greater China and beyond. It also demonstrates Adrian Cheng’s ambition of supporting entrepreneurship in Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area.
As people become more health-conscious, NWD and Prenetics are joining hands to enable improved public access to healthcare services in Hong Kong. Starting from today, Prenetics has set up a Circle Labs concept store in K11 MUSEA to showcase Circle HealthPod products, providing easy and accessible healthcare for the community. Customers can experience the technology and place orders on site.
Danny Yeung, Co-Founder and Group CEO of Prenetics, said, “We are extremely excited to partner with Adrian and the entire NWD ecosystem. For the past year, we have been working with University of Oxford on the HealthPod, it’s truly a consummation of so many parties coming together to bring new innovation to the World. The Circle HealthPod is the first of its kind and we believe it will change how consumers consume healthcare. We imagine a future where every household and every office will have a Circle HealthPod, capable of testing for all infectious diseases without ever having to step foot outside. Our mission at Prenetics has always been to decentralize healthcare and today’s announcement with NWD marks a significant milestone.”
The Circle HealthPod COVID-19 test is a PCR-quality molecular nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT) that detects the RNA of SARS-CoV-2. Several key features are listed below:
- A pocket-sized lab that provides 96% sensitivity and 99.9% specificity in the detection of COVID-19
- A HealthPod which is designed to be used more than 1000 times and in the future with single-use capsules to detect other infectious diseases such as Flu and STDs
- A pain-free short nasal swab with PCR-quality results in 20 minutes
- Results displayed on the device or on the individual’s Circle HealthPod app. Results can be digitally shared with anyone to verify negative results
Benjamin Hallam, Head of Brand Strategy and Expansion of New World Development, said, “NWD believes that sharing our resources is a good way to help homegrown young businesses prosper. This collaboration not only provides the community with a game-changing molecular diagnostics testing technology for COVID-19, but it also allows millions of people to gradually resume a normal life. Today’s collaboration is a manifestation of New World’s commitment to social innovation and Creating Shared Value, as we continue to support Hong Kong’s medical start-up scene, connecting it with the global audience.”
Professor Zhanfeng Cui, Donald Pollock Professor of Chemical Engineering, University of Oxford, said, “At the onset of the pandemic in early 2020, my team at the University of Oxford started to work on rapid diagnostics so that we could contribute to society. Our goal at the time was to develop the technology for any individual to be able to perform a rapid self-test with PCR-quality results, anywhere, anytime, without a laboratory. I couldn’t be more proud of today’s announcement by Prenetics and New World Development on the launch of the Circle HealthPod. We look forward to seeing HealthPod brought to the global community. Development has already started on capsules to detect influenza and other infectious diseases.”
Alfred Sit, Secretary for Innovation and Technology of Hong Kong added, “To effectively cope with the new normal under COVID-19, we need to have more user-friendly testing kits ready for use at family events, social gatherings, sports, entertainment and at the workplace, empowering individuals to resume normal life and drive healthier communities. I am proud that a Hong Kong company is at the forefront of healthtech innovation, enabling a brighter future for Hong Kong and the world.”
The Circle HealthPod will be offered via various sets.
- The Circle HealthPod Trial Set, which consists of the HealthPod and one free Covid-19 capsule, at HK $990 / US $127
- The Circle HealthPod Starter Set, inclusive of the trial set + 5 capsules, at HK $1,649 / US $212. Each capsule is just HK $110 with the starter set.
- The Single-Use COVID-19 Capsule Set, at HK $190 / US $25
Starting today, consumers can pre-order the Circle HealthPods directly on https://circlepod.co/ and at the Circle Labs K11 MUSEA store with delivery beginning on August 30th.
As a part of NWD’s #LoveWithoutBorders campaign, a shared support platform launched during the COVID-19 outbreak, the Circle HealthPod will be available first in Hong Kong and later in the UK and US.
1. Huang, W. E. et al. RT-LAMP for rapid diagnosis of coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. Microb. Biotechnol. 13(4), 950–961 (2020)
2. Cui, Z. et al. Development of a rapid test kit for SARS-CoV-2: an example of product design. Bio-Des. Manuf. 3, 83–86 (2020).
About New World Development
Founded in 1970, New World Development Company Limited (“The Group”, Hong Kong stock code: 00017) was publicly listed in Hong Kong in 1972 and is a constituent stock of the Hong Kong Hang Seng Index. A premium brand infused with a unique personality best defined by The Artisanal Movement, New World Group’s core business areas include investment in property and property development, and investment in and/or operation of roads, commercial aircraft leasing, construction, insurance, hotels and other strategic businesses. Its Greater China operations, especially in the Greater Bay Area, had a total asset value of approximately HK$616.5 billion as at 31 December 2020. The Group’s two listed companies are NWS Holdings Limited (61%), and New World Department Store China Limited (75%). New World China Land Limited is wholly owned by the Group.
About Prenetics Limited
Prenetics is a leading genetics and diagnostic health testing company, operational in 10 countries with a team of over 500, led by visionary entrepreneur, Danny Yeung. Prenetics has received over USD 85-million in strategic funding from Alibaba Hong Kong Entrepreneurs Fund, Ping An Ventures, Apis Partners and more. Prenetics has to-date performed more than 4 million diagnostic and genetic tests in Hong Kong and the United Kingdom. In Hong Kong, Prenetics was the 1st private laboratory to have been appointed by the Hong Kong government for mass community Covid-19 testing. In the United Kingdom, Prenetics was instrumental in the re-start of the English Premier League season having done the testing across 20 clubs. Prenetics mission is to decentralize health care, and focuses on the comprehensive testing capabilities covering prevention, diagnostics, and personalized care. For more information, visit https://prenetics.com.