The point of care tests is the test done outside the laboratory near the site of patient care. The point of care testing allows expedite clinical decision making and patient loss to follow-up while waiting for test results by bringing easy and convenient method to test immediately and conveniently. It also facilitate delivery of care outside traditional healthcare settings and require less complex infrastructure and training. The point of care device is usually membrane-based test strip often enclosed by plastic test cassette. The point of care testing can be used for self-testing like pregnancy test kit & glucose monitoring kit, it can also be used for community testing with a minimally trained worker for malaria, HIV & dengue, also for testing in clinics by a healthcare provider, testing of In-patient in the hospitals and testing in the peripheral Laboratory.
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Point of care (POC) test can be any of the following as mentioned below:
- Pregnancy & Fertility Test kit
- Blood Glucose Testing kit
- Cholesterol Test kit
- Drug of Abuse Test Kit
- Infectious disease Test Kit
- Urine Testing Kit
- Oncology Test Kit
- Cardiac Marker Kit
- Blood Gas/ Electrolyte Test Kit
- Saliva Test Kit
- Hematology Test Kit
- Food Pathogen Test Kit
- Allergy Test Kit
- Fecal Occult Test Kit
- Miscellaneous Testing
Point of care market is growing due to advancement in technology and demand for quick test results. Also rise in prevalence of infectious disease and lifestyle disease like cardiac disease and diabetes along with rise in aging population is increasing demand of point of care diagnostics manifold. Awareness among people for the easy and convenient way to get faster test results is increasing the demand also physicians are preferring POC for their quick decision making to prescribe a disease specific drug unlikely previously when doctor start symptomatic treatment as test procedure take long time for the results. POC has a tremendous demand in Americas region and pool the largest share in POC market also due to increase in awareness Asia-Pacific region will show tremendous growth in future with highest population countries in Asia will drive it tremendously adding to the market share. Traditional method of clinical testing required skilled labor while POC required minimal training hence reducing the cost required in training along with the time consumed to perform the test. The major restrain for Point of care test market is unwillingness to change traditional treatment practice.
Point of care market can be segmented on prescription mode as follows:
- Over-The-Counter (OTC) Test Kits
- Prescription Based Test Kits
There are several POC kits available in the market Over-The-Counter, the HIV rapid test kit is one such example which require either blood sample or the oral fluid, testing with the oral fluid require swabbing the device against the upper and lower gums and then inserting it into the buffer vial later results can be seen after 20 min. Also available are the various pregnancy and blood glucose testing kits since long and are used in almost every home nowadays, other available test kits are urinary tract infection test kits, drug of abuse test kits, allergy test kits, cholesterol test kits & thyroid level testing kits which reduces frequent doctor visits and longtime wait.
Point of care test has become an integral part of day today test including home healthcare and by healthcare providers. Point of care test is essential so as to provide the patient with quick and accurate treatment hence avoiding different drug side effects caused pertaining to drug prescribed pertaining to non-surety of disease. Point of care market is well established in the developed countries with giving world largest market share, however developing countries like in Asia-Pacific have huge potential due to high population and growing awareness for POC. Market is majorly driven by demand and awareness for quick and easy results.
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Depending on geographic region, point of care test market is segmented into five key regions: North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and Middle East & Africa.
Some of the key market players in global point of care test market are Roche, Alere, Abbott, Beckman Coulter, Quigen, Thermofisher Scientific, Cepheid, Hologic, Gen-Probe, Orasure, Corgenics, DRG Diagnostics GmbH to name a few.