Author(s): Briggs C, Kimber S, Green L, Briggs C, Kimber S, Green L
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Abstract Point-of-care testing (POCT) in haematology has continued to grow in popularity and uptake throughout the world. The increasing demand to reduce the turnaround time of test results, coupled with rapid improvements in technology, have led to the development of several devices that are designed for use in different clinical settings, with the hope of improving patient care. The most used POCT in haematology is measurement of haemoglobin concentration. Other POCT devices (used primarily in developing countries) for malaria screening and CD4+ T-lymphocytes for quantification of human-immunodeficiency-virus are becoming the cornerstone for the diagnosis and management of these disorders. New devices are also available for red cell indices, white blood cell count and platelets. In this review clinical studies that validate the use of such devices will be discussed, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of POCT in haematology. A disadvantage of POCT is a lack of training, poor standardization in obtaining blood samples and insufficient internal/external quality assessment. As there is every reason to expect that POCT use will increase in all pathology disciplines, including haematology, it is imperative that systems are put in place to oversee these issues. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
This article was published in Br J Haematol
and referenced in Journal of Blood Disorders & Transfusion