Point-of-Care Testing Allows Pharmacists to Diagnose and Treat Patients Almost Immediately
In this interview from the National Community Pharmacy Association 2018 Annual Meeting, Bruce Kneeland, PharmD, Senior Advisor at Kneeland Services, explains the benefit of point-of-care testing on immediate diagnosis and treatment, without the need for an appointment.
Bruce Kneeland, PharmD:
One of the most exciting things that I'm hearing pharmacy owners talk about is there ability to get into point of care testing. Theres 2 or 3 things about point-of-care testing that are intriguing. First and foremost, in the broadest sense, we're talking about the pharmacist's ability to, under protocol, under a collaborative practice agreement with a physician, do a simple swab tests with patients that will indicate whether or not they're suffering from flu or whether they're suffering from strep throat. In either case, there's appropriate medical therapy that they can then deliver after the test, but the real benefit is just being able to have people come into the pharmacy without an appointment, present to the pharmacy or the pharmacist's staff with a concern that they have. In most cases, it's a mother who's been told to come pick her kid up from a day care or from school because they're running a fever. And immediately, immediately means within minutes, determine whether or not they have strep throat or flu, and if they do, then appropriate therapy is given. They can fill prescription for an antibiotic right then, or if not, give the mother peace of mind in knowing that it's a minor ailment, and in many cases walk out of the pharmacy with some acetaminophen or some cough drops or whatever.