HORIBA Medical’s POC CRP analyser reduces unnecessary admissions at Marlow & Thame

Lab-quality CRP combined with full blood count results rapidly available in frailty assessment hubs

Thame and Marlow community hubs, run by Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust, have each recently installed HORIBA Medical’s latest point-of-care testing analyser, the Microsemi CRP.

These new analysers are now streamlining existing diagnostic pathways in the community and helping to reduce local A&E admissions for frail patients.

The Microsemi CRP is a compact and user-friendly ‘near-patient’ analyser which uniquely delivers a lab-accurate, three-part differential full blood count (FBC) combined with a C-reactive protein (CRP) measurement from a single tiny 18μL whole blood sample within just four minutes.

Information gathered from the analyser is of great value in determining the presence of bacterial infection and inflammation, and, given the rapidity of results delivered, patients can receive the treatment they need straight away, or be referred appropriately and without delay.

Opened in 2017, the new frailty assessment hubs, located at both Thame and Marlow community hospitals - alongside those already existing at Stoke Mandeville & Wycombe hospitals - offer a one-stop shop for frail patients in the locality to receive the care they need closer to home. These also have the added benefit of reducing pressure on the local hospitals by reducing unnecessary admissions - particularly during the busier winter months.

Although the service is in its early days at Thame and Marlow, the impact that the implementation of these analysers has had on Stoke Mandeville ED and Wycombe’s Urgent Care Centre has been invaluable, especially in the winter months

Teams of elderly care consultants, nurses, therapists, paramedics and GPs are available on site to provide expert assessments, undertake tests, and agree a treatment plan with patients. If required, they can refer patients to the right community or hospital team to provide ongoing support or treatment.

Commenting on the beneficial impact of the Microsemi CRP analyser, Shelagh Wojtowicz, staff nurse at Marlow Community Hub, said: “Patients see it as an advantage. Before the analyser was installed, we sent our samples away via two collection slots. Of course, this meant that patients were not able to access their results until 1-2 days later, whereas now we can perform a combined FBC and CRP, see a result within four minutes, and take the relevant course of action almost immediately. It also means that patient samples don’t get lost.”

Kate Lee, lead nurse, added: “Although the service is in its early days at Thame and Marlow, the impact that the implementation of these analysers has had on Stoke Mandeville ED and Wycombe’s Urgent Care Centre has been invaluable, especially in the winter months.”

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