Mobile Medical Laboratory Brings High-Complexity Infectious Disease Testing to South Africa’s Remote Regions
Immediate access to TB and HIV testing means faster diagnosis and treatment for patients in remote areas
Use of a new mobile medical laboratory is boosting access to quality diagnostic testing for patients in remote areas of South Africa, while slashing turnaround times and courier costs. This German-built mobile clinical laboratory performs high complexity testing and may provide a new model for diagnostic testing for other developing countries.
Fraunhofer Institute for Biomedical Engineering (IBMT) in Saarland, Germany, built the $2 million mobile medical laboratory in collaboration with the government of the Western Cape, a province in southwest South Africa.
The clinical lab-on-wheels operates as an extension of the Caledon Hospital. This is a 75-bed community hospital located in the Overberg district, about 62 miles east of Cape Town. Specimens are sent to the mobile laboratory from health facilities in the surrounding area.