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How is Point of Care Testing Transforming the Medical Diagnosis?

technology research on Point of Care Testing

Point-of-care testing, also known as near-patient testing, is a medical diagnostic procedure in which healthcare is offered close to or near the patient. Simultaneously, World Health Organization (WHO) describes an ideal POC diagnostic as a device that follows the ASSURED criteria i.e., a POCT device must be affordable, sensitive, specific, user‐friendly, rapid and robust, equipment‐free, and deliverable.

With the use of POCT technology, the diagnostic test is brought conveniently and instantly to the patient which simultaneously increases the likelihood of the patient and physician to obtain results quickly. Once the results are obtained, the making of clinical management decisions becomes easier and efficient.

Point-of-care testing – Advantages

  • Point-of-care tests are easy to perform compared to the long procedures of conventional test methodologies.
  • POCT is portable and faster than traditional diagnostics approaches and can be employed in limited resource vicinities.
  • Turn-around-times for point-of-care-testing are considerably lower than the laboratory test turn-around-times for example, Microchip-based real-time PCR assay-Truenat can provide diagnosis results for HIV within 35 mins as compared to normal lab procedures where results may be obtained in the duration of 24-48 hour

Point of Care Testing – Categorisation

POCT in general includes various categories of tests ranging from pregnancy testing, urine strip testing, rapid coagulation testing, and infectious disease testing to food pathogen screening, hemoglobin diagnostic, etc. Along with this, PCOT comes in handy through the use of portable, transportable, and handheld instruments for instant blood glucose management devices. These tests if not available in the portable configuration are easily available in form of small bench analyzers and fixed devices.

Point of care Testing – Global Market Analysis:

The easy accessibility of POCT and the current outbreak of COVID-19, have changed the dynamics of laboratory-based assays because of which many of the big players in the pharma market are more focussed on the development of rapid tests. Accordingly, the point-of-care diagnostics global market has witnessed substantial growth in recent years as the market is projected at USD 35.4 Billion in 2021 and is expected to grow up to USD 70.8 Billion in 2030.

Conclusion:

The market statistics, therefore, provide a clear picture of how POCT is rapidly developing as a technology and how diagnostic assays can assist in the early and precise diagnosis of several contagious diseases. Although the expense of delivering a result at the point of care may be greater than the laboratory testing, but still point of care tests have wider patient, functional, economic, and societal advantages.