Introduction Point of care tests (POCTs) for syphilis, HIV, and Trichomonas are currently available, easy-to-use and inexpensive. We surveyed practicing Ob-gyns to determine POCT current use and perceived barriers to use.
Methods Between June and August 2016, 1000 members of the American College of Ob-gyns were randomly selected and invited to complete a Qualtrics survey: 600 were members of the Collaborative Ambulatory Research Network (CARN). Respondents completing at least 60% of the survey were included in analyses.
Results 930 members had valid emails; 288 (31%) participated in and completed the survey. 70% were male. Average years in practice were 16 for males and 23 for females. 30% reported diagnosing STDs 1–2 times/week and 45% reported 1–2 times/month. POCTs used included pregnancy test (83%), urine dipstick (83%), wet mount test (79%) and the vagina pH test (54.8%). Few used Gram stain (5%) and stat RPRs (4%). Newer POCTs were used less frequently with 20% reporting Affirm VPIII test use, and only 9% using a rapid HIV test. Most common barriers were the amount of reimbursement received for performing the test (61.9%) and the payment coverage from the patient (61.3%).
Conclusion Ob-gyns in the U.S. rely on laboratory test results and older traditional POCTs to diagnosis STDs. Future development and marketing of POCTs should consider not only ease and time of test performance but also cost of tests to the practice and the patient, as well as reimbursement.
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