Campus Units

Aerospace Engineering, Chemical and Biological Engineering, Materials Science and Engineering, Sociology, Center for Bioplastics and Biocomposites

Document Type

Article

Publication Version

Published Version

Publication Date

10-27-2017

Journal or Book Title

Micromachines

Volume

8

Issue

11

First Page

317

DOI

10.3390/mi8110317

Abstract

Reducing the global diseases burden requires effective diagnosis and treatment. In the developing world, accurate diagnosis can be the most expensive and time-consuming aspect of health care. Healthcare cost can, however, be reduced by use of affordable rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs). In the developed world, low-cost RDTs are being developed in many research laboratories; however, they are not being equally adopted in the developing countries. This disconnect points to a gap in the design philosophy, where parameterization of design variables ignores the most critical component of the system, the point-of-use stakeholders (e.g., doctors, nurses and patients). Herein, we demonstrated that a general focus on reducing cost (i.e., “low-cost”), rather than efficiency and reliability is misguided by the assumption that poverty reduces the value individuals place on their well-being. A case study of clinicians in Kenya showed that “zero-cost” is a low-weight parameter for point-of-use stakeholders, while reliability and standardization are crucial. We therefore argue that a user-driven, value-addition systems-engineering approach is needed for the design of RDTs to enhance adoption and translation into the field.

Comments

This article is published as F. W. Kimani, S. M. Mwangi, B. J. Kwasa, A. M. Kusow, B. K. Ngugi, J. Chen, X. Liu, R. Cademartiri, and M. M. Thuo “Rethinking the Design of Low-Cost Point-Of-Care Diagnostic Devices” Micromachines 2017, 8(11), 317; DOI: 10.3390/mi8110317. Posted with permission.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Copyright Owner

The Authors

Language

en

File Format

application/pdf

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