(The Times-Gazette) – Researchers have developed a new smartphone accessory that can be used to diagnose HIV and syphilis within 15 minutes; and it works by only pricking the finger for blood in any setting without reference to standardized medical laboratories.
Developed by medical scientists from Columbia University, it is the first smartphone accessory that replicates all the functions of a laboratory-based blood test.
To confirm the accuracy of readings in areas with high incidences of mother-to-child infection of HIV and syphilis, the smartphone device, called a dongle, was tested on 96 pregnant women in Rwanda.
The blood samples of the 96 volunteers were analyzed for HIV and syphilis, after local health workers were given 30-minute training on how the device works and how it is used. Ninety-seven of the participants reported satisfaction and positive response to the device.