Health Screenings: Fingerstick or Venous Blood Draw ,Laboratory Hematology testing

Point-of-care testing

Point-of-care testing (POCT) and new testing technologies

POCT for HIV is a testing technology with which a person can be tested for HIV and learn their status at the same visit. A healthcare professional collects a few drops of blood from pricking the client’s finger and mixes the samples with a solution in order to detect HIV antibodies. 

POCT is:

  • Fast. POCT kits will give results in under a minute as opposed to the several weeks that it takes for results to come back from a laboratory with a standard test. 
  • Effective in reaching populations that may not test regularly. In a study of 156 prison inmates in the Halton region of Ontario who were tested for HIV using POCT, 42% said they had never been tested for HIV before. 52% said that they chose to be tested for this project because results were available immediately, and 41% said they chose to be tested for this project because they could do so anonymously.
  • Accessible. The collection of several drops with a finger prick can be less intimidating to someone who has a fear of needles, and people who have used injection drugs heavily may find POCT easier if they have significant scarring on their arms. 

How it works...

Pictured: a rapid point-of-care demonstration was executed by HiM 

As part of the first Canadian National HIV Testing Day in 2018, a member of our team here at the Canadian AIDS Society took part in a demonstration of a point-of-care HIV test.

Check out the demonstration below:

Step 1: 

Step 2: 

Step 3: