Disease diagnosis can be complex, but is vital in ensuring that the right treatment choices are made.

An accurate diagnosis means a doctor knows how to make the right decisions for their patients at the right time. It means people know they can have improved control over their health and wellbeing. It also means that healthcare systems know that they are investing in the right solutions that make a real difference.

When a proper diagnosis is made, the right treatment choices can be made. For example, there are several different types of breast cancer, each of which requires a different treatment approach. An accurate diagnosis unlocks the correct treatment path.

Ideally, a diagnosis should be not only accurate, but timely as well. Early, accurate diagnosis can significantly increase a patient’s chance of survival. In breast cancer for example, 98.8% of patients survive at least five years if diagnosed early, compared with only 26.3% if diagnosed in an advanced stage. Yet, in some African countries, as many as 80% of patients are diagnosed at the late-to-end stage.

What causes a lack of access to diagnostics?

For some diseases, including many types of cancer, diagnosis can be complex, requiring specialist laboratory technicians or facilities for testing. Hospitals or clinics in many areas of the world are simply not equipped with the machines or operating technicians needed to meet demand.

With rarer diseases, a diagnosis is often delayed or incorrect because symptoms can be confused with those of other common conditions.

Lack of awareness is also a major issue, because it can mean people do not spot the symptoms that would lead them to visit their doctor.

What are we doing?

We are specialists in diagnostics and  built partnerships to deliver programmes to improve access to timely, accurate diagnosis for people all over the world.

For example, we are the leading provider of HIV viral load testing, a vital test for diagnosis of HIV. We work with several high-profile partners – such as UNAIDS and the Clinton Health Access Initiative – to help improve access to HIV diagnostics. Through our Global Access Programme, we have initiated the largest infant testing programme in the world featuring a dried blood diagnostic technique. Over seven million infants have been tested for HIV through this programme.

 

Explore some of our projects worldwide!

Tags: Society, Patients, Access to healthcare