Simplicity, Speed and Accuracy: Pick Two for Your POCT
The impossible trinity refers to the difficult trade-offs countries face in trying to achieve incompatible policy goals related to the economy, society, and finance. Similarly, in the IVD field there is an "impossible trinity" for POCT products - it is not possible for a single product to be technically advanced, have good after-sales service, and be inexpensive. Hospitals must sacrifice one of these aspects when choosing a product. For example, choosing an immunology product from Roche or a microbiology product from Merieux means getting cutting-edge technology and service but at a higher price. Choosing a cheaper product means compromising on reliability or service.
POCT also faces its own impossible trinity in trying to be simple to operate, deliver fast results, and maintain accuracy - all while supporting whole blood and being cost-effective. To summarize these ideal traits:
1. Simple operation (supports whole blood, etc.)
2. Accurate results (comparable to large instruments)
3. Fast results/low cost
It is not possible to maximize all three. Products that prioritize simplicity and speed often sacrifice accuracy. This is very common - home-use blood glucose meters, early pregnancy tests, and even COVID antigen tests are easy for laypeople to use and give rapid results but compromise accuracy with more false positives/negatives and require further testing for diagnosis.
Products that are simple to use with excellent results often have slower turnaround times. For example, Merieux's molecular FILMARRAY platform uses microfluidics for very simple operation and produces accurate results for multiple pathogens simultaneously. However, run times are still nearly an hour compared to large PCR instruments, and costs are high.
Finally, products with fast, high-quality results typically require more complex sample preparation. Merieux's classic VIDAS immunoassay system focuses on important tests like cardiac marker panels and PCT with excellent sensitivity/specificity. But as it does not support whole blood, it has limitations as a true POCT platform for patient care areas compared to the lab.
Since no perfect POCT product exists, Mantacc believes patient care areas should prioritize simplicity and speed while tolerating some loss of accuracy. However, labs and stat testing should focus more on clinically valuable diagnostic results, favoring accuracy and turnaround time over a simplified workflow.
At Mantacc, we have the expertise and manufacturing capability to provide the POCT supplies our customers need, based on their unique requirements and priorities. For patient care settings where ease-of-use and rapid turnaround are critical, we can design simplified tests with streamlined workflows that deliver results in minutes. For laboratories demanding maximum accuracy, our R&D team keeps pace with the latest diagnostic technologies to incorporate features like multiplex detection, advanced algorithms, and connectivity with LIS/EMR systems. And with our flexible production lines and purchasing leverage, we can meet customer expectations on pricing and availability as well. Contact our sales representatives to discuss how we can develop a custom POCT solution tailored to your clinical demands and budget.
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