Portable, automated device moves blood, urine testing to the exam room

This being an IT publication, we generally don't pay much attention to medical devices and diagnostic equipment unless there's, you know, actually an information component to the technology. We'll make a bit of an exception here, mostly because the company behind this new product brought in developers with a background in consumer electronics--and because it's similar enough to the pocket ultrasounds we've occasionally written about.

Cork, Ireland-based Radisens Diagnostics has created a portable, digital device that can return results of urine and blood tests in a matter of minutes, even in a general practitioner's exam room or office-based surgical suite. A nurse, phlebotomist or other technician places a sample as small as a finger-prick of blood on a specially designed clear, plastic disc that automatically takes care of all the preparatory work such as plasma separation and reagent mixing, the Irish Times reports.

The user then places the disc into a battery-powered device that operates like a CD player, spinning the sample to the edge so sensors can read it. Within 10 minutes, the machine returns laboratory-grade results.

Radisens CEO Jerry O'Brien tells the Irish Times that the diagnostic tool is the first of its kind, largely because he and his business partners conducted market research before they developed the product. "We were told people didn't want to wait days for blood test results. So the solution is a highly portable device that can be in every GP surgery and provides laboratory-quality results within minutes," O'Brien is quoted as saying.

Radisens is just beginning to move into the manufacturing and commercialization phase for the yet-unnamed product. As the company continues to develop the device, here's a tip if they want to get featured in FierceMobileHealthcare again: find a way to output the results directly into an EMR. Yeah, that would impress us a lot.

To learn more:
- take a look at this Irish Times story