Saturday, July 5, 2008

Innovation in HIV testing

I came across an interesting report discussing a new HIV detection technology starting trials in India.

This technology supplants the previous test which requires a centrifuge for separation of serum from blood. By requiring only a simple finger-prick of blood for analysis, it enables easier testing of potentially HIV-positive patients and better case management through the joining of pre-test counselling, HIV testing, post-test counselling and medical treatment, all in one visit. It is hoped that this technology will enable the testing of the 70-75% of the 2.5 million Indian HIV-positive patients who are currently not aware of their status.

The National AIDS Control Organization (NACO) is currently undertaking a testing methodology similar to that which L-RAMP follows for all new product introductions - lab trials have been expanded into large-scale field trials, after which data will be analyzed and good performance will result in the test being distributed nationally.

An interesting technology with enormous potential social benefit.

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