RACGP Standards for point of care testing
The current regulatory and accreditation requirements for pathology services restrict access to Medicare benefits for point of care testing performed in general practices. Through developing Standards for point of care testing (5th edition) (the Standards), the RACGP is seeking to provide a fit for purpose accreditation framework for the performance of point of care testing in general practices. The Standards aim to improve the quality and safety of point of care testing performed by health services. The Standards also provide services with a way of identifying and addressing any gaps they have in their systems and processes.
There are a number of benefits that point of care testing may offer including:
- the ability to make immediate and informed decisions about patient care, improving clinical management
- greater patient compliance with pathology requests, especially for those patients who are most at risk
- greater convenience and satisfaction for patients – given speed of diagnosis and treatment decisions
- more opportunities for patient engagement with the practice team.
To ensure the Standards are meaningful to the profession and other stakeholders, we invited interested individuals an organisations to review the latest draft and provide feedback. The draft RACGP Standards for point of care testing (the Standards) consultation phase is now closed. The Standards will shortly be piloted in Australian general practices and released for further consultation.
To be accredited against the Standards for point of care testing, a service must first be accredited against the Standards for general practices (5th edition). Accordingly, the service needs to meet the requirements of the following modules:
- Quality Improvement
- Point of care testing.
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