Point of Care Testing

At Mitchell’s, we care about the health of all Our Community.  Schedule your tests today at our friendly pharmacy.

In many healthcare settings around the world, people needing care often experience extended delays for accurate diagnostic results. Hours to days can pass while questions persist, leaving caregivers without answers, and patients without treatment. When every minute lost can greatly impact the delivery of care, answers can’t wait.

Point-of-care (POC) testing involves performing a diagnostic test outside of a laboratory which produces a rapid and reliable result, aiding in identifying or managing chronic diseases and acute infections. These tests are waived under the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) of 1988 and, just like other CLIA waived tests for glucose and cholesterol, pharmacists can charge patients directly or possibly bill third party payers.

It allows for the screening and treatment process to be completed during a single encounter, thereby improving access to care, counseling, and patient outcomes. By providing accurate data on disease prevention, point-of-care testing can increase public health agencies’ ability to reach targeted populations.

Adding to the utility of point-of-care testing, CLIA-waived platforms exist which allow for an expansion of medication therapy management programs. Testing for serum creatinine, serum electrolytes, TSH, INR, and other labs may allow pharmacists to better assist patients to optimize medication therapy and avoid adverse drug events.

Acute Infectious Testing

  • Influenza– Causes 12,000- 50,000 deaths annually in the United States. Rapid testing for influenza A and B allows for accurate and timely treatment, as patients only have a 48-hour window to receive critical antiviral therapy.
  • Strep A– Only 10-15% of adults with acute pharyngitis—a sore throat—test positive for strep, yet up to 75% are prescribed antibiotics. The majority of pharyngitis cases are viral and self-limiting in nature and could be symptomatically treated with OTC products. Combating antibiotic resistance should be a priority for all pharmacists.
  • COVID Rapid Antigen – Rapid antigen tests can be used for screening testing in high-risk congregate settings in which repeat testing could quickly identify persons with a SARS-CoV-2 infection to inform infection prevention and control measures, thus preventing transmission.
  • COVID Antibody – A positive test result shows you might have antibodies from an infection with the virus that causes COVID-19. However, there is a chance a positive result means that you have antibodies from an infection with a virus from the same family of viruses (called coronaviruses), such as the one that causes the common cold.

Chronic Disease Screening

  • Blood Pressure – We suggest an annual screening for adults aged 40 years or older and for those who are at increased risk for high blood pressure. Persons at increased risk include those who have high-normal blood pressure (130 to 139/85 to 89 mm Hg), those who are overweight or obese, and African Americans.

  • Oxygen Saturation / Pulse Oximeter – Pulse oximetry is a noninvasive and painless test that measures your oxygen saturation level, or the oxygen levels in your blood. It can rapidly detect even small changes in how efficiently oxygen is being carried to the extremities furthest from the heart, including the legs and the arms.

  • Lipids– 8% of Americans have undiagnosed dyslipidemia. Cholesterol screenings allow pharmacists to identify patients who would benefit from statin therapy.

Chronic Disease Monitoring

  • A1c– Just over half of the 29 million Americans with diabetes achieved an A1c < 7.0% in recent years. Monitoring patient values may help direct counseling and therapeutic management to improve glycemic control.

  • INR– Monitoring anticoagulation therapy can assist pharmacists in making appropriate therapy evaluations and recommendations for reducing anticoagulation associated bleeding and clotting risks.

  • Blood Glucose – A blood glucose test is a blood test which screens for diabetes by measuring the level of glucose (sugar) in a person’s blood. Normal blood glucose level (while fasting) range within 70 to 99 mg/dL (3.9 to 5.5 mmol/L). Higher ranges could indicate pre-diabetes or diabetes.