The New Zealand Medical Association believes that point-of-care testing needs to be regulated at a national level. It also needs to be supported by adequate clinical governance and quality management systems by those who provide the tests. This will ensure safe, effective, clinically appropriate point of care testing.
“We are in the middle of a pandemic, and point of care testing has dramatically increased,which means right now is the right time to put in place national regulation to safeguard all concerned,” says NZMA Chair Dr Kate Baddock.
“Point-of-care testing, which is the testing and analysis of clinical specimens outside the traditional laboratory and near to or at the site of patient care, is performed in a number of places such as emergency departments, general practice surgeries, pharmacies and now our community based assessment centres and it just makes sense to have national regulation now.
“Currently, point-of-care testing devices are not subject to effective regulation in New Zealand and this poses significant challenges to the consistency, accuracy, recording of, and quality assurance of, testing especially for the patient.”