Location: The Netherlands and United States
The fingerstick blood test can advise medical professionals within ten minutes if a patient’s illness is viral or bacterial.
More than 90% of patients who see their doctor regarding symptoms of an airways or lung infection have a virus. Such viruses do not require medication, but improve with rest and self-care. However, as the symptoms are very similar to a bacterial infection, some doctors prescribe antibiotics on symptoms alone without access to quick and easy testing. Overuse of antibiotics is responsible for antibiotic resistance which costs the US $20 billion a year, and they can cause side-effects.
FebriDx is a point-of-care testing device that can identify whether or not the symptoms are caused by bacteria in ten minutes. The small, all-in-one, portable device only requires a fingerstick blood sample. The test can be performed by a nurse during the initial assessment to free up the doctor’s time and provides a simple yes or no answer, just like a pregnancy test.
Knowing with certainty whether the patient has a virus or bacterial infection can help provide the right treatment at the right time. The in-appointment test can save healthcare costs on other unnecessary tests, medication, and follow-up visits. Having the results on-hand can help reassure patients who may be insisting on antibiotics that it’s not the correct treatment for their illness.