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Minerva Cardioangiol. 2008 Oct;56(5 Suppl):11-20.

[NPT (near patient test) in the pharmacy: document and practice guidelines 2008].

[Article in Italian]

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U.O. Nefrologia, L'Aquila, Italy.


NPT tests in the pharmacy. Blood testing can be made with NPT (near patient testing) directly in the pharmacy. Most tests can be made with a single drop of blood (i.e. from a finger) and results are comparable with results from blood test obtained with standard vein blood samples. NPT is basically used for: 1 - evaluating the risk of a disease. 2 evaluating or confirming the presence of a disease. 3 to manage and monitor treatments. The social role of the pharmacy in NPT (particularly in cardiovascular screening) is very important as the pharmacy is an institution with capillary diffusion in the territory. The pharmacy often constitutes an important, first-level consultancy point for the population, particularly where health institutions are far away (small villages) or not easily accessible. Rules for NPT. Guidelines for NPT testing in the pharmacy have been proposed and discussed in a consensus meeting (Spoleto, 2007). NPT guidelines suggest operating management and technical procedures and indicate prospective lines of action defining new roles for the pharmacy. Coagulation tests can be now made in the pharmacy at a very low cost and with an efficacy comparable to blood tests obtained with a vein sample. Results can be read in seconds. This test is also available for personal use and home testing. NPT: The Clinical Study. The evaluation of the results of a clinical study (patients with venous thrombosis/pulmonary embolisation, patients with fibrillation and patients with artificial cardiac valves) indicates that costing is very favourable for NPT which may reduce costs and improve management of many clinical conditions and their monitoring. Training and control systems help NPT testing to be reliable and useful to screen and manage most clinical and risk conditions. The clinical study also shows the positive correlation between NPT tests and standard' tests. In conclusion NPT tests are now very reliable and cost-effective and can be used for screening, diagnosis and to monitor treatments.

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