New point-of-care (POC) tests are currently being developed which can be used in clinic to simultaneously test for multiple sexually transmitted infections (STIs). In work now published online in BMJ Open, we developed a model to compare three possible strategies for POC STI testing with the current practice of microscopy and lab-based testing. The three strategies were: 1) a dual test for chlamydia and gonorrhoea; 2) a triple test which also tests for M. genitalium, and 3) a quadruple test which also tested for trichomoniasis. The model examined the overall costs, patient benefits and cost-effectiveness of these strategies. The full results of the economic evaluation including the article and supplementary material are available online.
An article authored by Aquarius was published today on the British In Vitro Diagnostics Association (BIVDA) website. The article commissioned jointly by BIVDA and Innovate UK suggests that the NHS could save over £6.9 billion in 5 years by making better use of diagnostic tests already on the market. These savings could have a huge impact in reducing the annual NHS shortfall, which is expected to be £20 billion by 2022.
In the latest episode of the BBC’s show, “Trust me, I’m a Doctor”, an innovative new product called Magseed is being trialled to improve surgery for women with breast cancer. A tiny magnetic seed is being used to transform how cancerous tissue is localised so that it can be removed, rather than using traditional guide wires. This helps the surgeons pinpoint exactly where they need to operate, and which angle is the best to approach the tumour. Much smaller tumours are currently being detected through the breast cancer screening programme, which are more difficult to find during surgery using guide wires.
Work has begun to develop a digital value proposition tool for a novel rapid sexually transmitted infection (STI) test
London, UK, 14 August 2017
Aquarius Population Health, a leading independent health economics consultancy, has recently been awarded an 18-month Innovate UK grant in collaboration with Atlas Genetics Ltd and the Applied Diagnostic Research and Evaluation Unit at St George’s University of London (total £2,000,000). The funding will be used to develop evidence for health services to support the introduction of a new rapid diagnostic test. In 30-minutes the test can diagnose multiple sexually transmitted infections including chlamydia and gonorrhoea – infections which could take up to a week to diagnose using the current laboratory testing systems.
Aquarius Population Health recently worked with the Applied Diagnostic Research & Evaluation Unit (ADREU) at St. Georges, University of London, to assess the cost-effectiveness of six hypothetical strategies for using antimicrobial resistance point-of-care testing to guide the treatment of gonorrhoea. Our findings were presented at the STI & HIV World Congress in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. [Wednesday 12th July, Session 15: STI/HIV testing and management].
Our Managing Director, Elisabeth Adams, spoke in November about the importance of exploring the health economics of point of care testing (POCT) at the Royal Society of Medicine Telemedicine and eHealth event in London. The video of her presentation is now online – view the full talk here.
Why is it important to explore the health economics of point of care testing (POCT)?
Evaluating the health economics of POCTs can help us better understand the cost, benefits and value of implementing these tests, compared to standard laboratory tests. We need to explore the acquisition costs of innovative technology like POCTs compared to standard tests, as well as the benefits generated for patients, service providers, clinicians and public health in general. Benefits can include faster results, better care, fewer complications, more efficient services and better use of resources, and knock-on benefits like reduced prevalence of disease. Those making purchasing decisions for new tests need evidence to prove the value of the tests.