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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Point of Care Testing: The Applications, Advantages, and Challenges. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Crossing Boundaries in Point of Care Testing (POCT)

There is not a hard line between testing location and methods. Kits and devices used for POCT and testing in the main laboratory can be the same methods and instruments. There are instances when the instrument is shared between locations and transported from the central laboratory to the POCT site. Administrative decisions to incorporate POCT devices into the workflow of any clinic or hospital should include an analysis of all testing locations and situations. This analysis should not exclude the main laboratory
POCT can be performed on the small to midsized instrument platforms found in the central laboratory. They are adaptable and can be transported to the patient’s location. The shared use of instruments, when appropriate, is economically appropriate and diminishes the need for training on additional methods or the purchase of duplicate identical equipment. Conversely, when the volume and type of testing is appropriate, the central laboratory may incorporate small POCT devices into the central laboratory to perform appropriate laboratory analyses.