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Hospital Healthcare Europe
Hospital Healthcare Europe

Lab welcomes report calling for more regulation of diagnostic testing

25 January, 2008, a UK direct-to-consumer health testing laboratory, has welcomed the Science Council’s, Science in Health Group report on the integration and implementation of diagnostic technologies in healthcare.

The report confirms there is “no more important function in the management of illness than to establish the correct diagnosis”.

Its findings also express concern about the lack of regulation of diagnostic testing services in the UK, compared, for example, to that of drug prescribing, with the result that “tests are available which have not been subjected to careful scientific testing or validity”. The Science Council has advised that measures must be put in place “to prevent incorrect advice being given to the public”.

YorkTest’s Scientific Director, Dr Gill Hart, welcomed the report saying: “The report concurs with the evidence we presented last year at the House of Lords, and the ‘What makes a good diagnostic’ initiative we put together with the British InVitro Diagnostics Association (BIVDA). A large number of tests are widely available to the public which have absolutely no basis in
science and the public are frequently confused.

“The lack of regulation is actively preventing people from finding relief from their ill health symptoms and optimising their health. The public should be able to take more responsibility, and have access to tests that can empower them, not potentially damage them.

“We really hope that at last this issue is taken seriously and suitable measures are put in place to protect the public.”

Doris-Ann Williams, Director General at BIVDA, said: “There has been a worrying increase in the public purchasing tests, often via the internet, which do not meet industry standards or provide accurate results. The threat to the public is evident and we need to see effective regulation which will allow every potential patient to have confidence in the tests they use.”

YorkTest Laboratories