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Hospital Healthcare Europe

Lab still primary test site for haematology diagnostics


5 December, 2007  

Analysts Research and Markets have added the new Frost & Sullivan European Haematology Diagnostics Markets to their offering, providing an overview of the current situation while assessing potential for the future.

They stated that since haematology was the first step in any diagnostic procedure, haematology diagnostics would experience sustained growth.

Complete blood count (CBC) and haemoglobin assays were the most-commonly ordered tests and they predicted reagent sales and market demand for these tests would continue to rise over the long term.

The market for haematology diagnostics in Europe was highly competitive, compelling continued time and investment in research and development. This market was restricted to specialised companies and competition revolved around prominent factors such as price, distribution, promotion strategies and innovation.

The analysts said there was rising demand for rapid tests with alternative technologies such as point-of-care (POC) systems, integrated analysers and automated instruments.

Yet the laboratory remained the primary site of testing for haematology diagnostics and was being re-defined by growing automation. Laboratory automation was growing within centralised laboratories to cope with quicker turn around times offered by POC instruments.

POC haematology diagnostics was picking up slowly and was anticipated to contribute more towards the market in the future, they said.

Awareness of the advantages of POC tests would help promote the growth of POC haematology diagnostics.

“The expansion of the POC haemoglobin (Hb) market is inhibited by the preference for laboratory-based tests; however, there are several factors that ensure that the haematology market continues to grow,” the research analysts noted.

“The crucial driving force in the European haematology POCT diagnostics market is that these tests, at a POC level, play a central role in everyday diagnostics and
monitoring.”

POC tests were gaining preference in some regions, as they generated quick results and assisted physicians in identifying optimal treatments.

Meanwhile, as Europe’s population aged, the rate of haematological test had also risen since the urge to remain healthy motivatied the elderly to undergo regular health check-ups.

“The use of POC instruments elevates patient confidence as they have the freedom to perform the tests on their own,” the research analyst added.

“Hence, POC haematology instruments will also offer significant growth potential.”

A key industry challenge related to the narrow end-user base; hospitals were the primary site for laboratory analysers, while emergency units and intensive care units were the principal end users of POC haematology analysers.

To enhance market expansion, market participants needed to build good end-user relationships and promote awareness about POC haematology diagnostics. Automation of analysers would help decrease labour costs, while the incorporation of advanced test menus in analysers would help reduce the costs of individual tests and boost demand.

The analysts looked at a number of issues including market engineering research for European haematology diagnostics in the continent as a whole and also in each of its major countries.

Research And Markets