Updated on 18 June 2013
Challenges in genetic diagnostics
Rapid development in genetic based molecular diagnostics has made wide application of tools, from basic research to detection of abnormalities in human health, possible. However, the industry faces various challenges in implementing genetic based molecular diagnostic at clinical stage.
Frost and Sullivan notes that while these advanced, automated and integrated technologies widen the application scope of molecular diagnostics, they also lead to high test costs, which are unaffordable to huge sections of patients in Asia-Pacific. Besides, lack of healthcare insurance and reimbursement schemes for diagnostics, which usually are not considered as important as drugs, further limits adoption in the region. The shortage of skilled technicians and insufficient infrastructure adds to the challenge. Physicians and pathologists are not trained to operate genetic diagnostic tools and this creates a gap in understanding the appropriate application of the technology.
"Expanding testing menus and application areas, as well as developing automated instruments through research and development are also crucial," notes Ms Gulifeiya. "Molecular diagnostic companies must look to enhance the accuracy of test results and reduce time consumption," she added.
Frost and Sullivan mentions that clinicians and patients must be educated on the medical value and benefit of molecular diagnostics as well as the need for early detection and preventive medicine. It emphasizes that governments need to establish reimbursements for molecular tests to boost test volumes as well as to reduce the treatment costs.