One can imagine that the Emergency Department is a place where quick decision-making is crucial, but for bacterial diagnosis this very often means symptom-based treatment decisions.
One UK-study aimed to depict just how often this happens in the ED and they found that of the over 900 patients that they included in their study, about a third was suspected to have a UTI and most of them (around 90% got antibiotic treatment). Subsequent microbiological analysis showed that between 60-70% of these patients, did not actually have a urinary tract infection.
But because these accurate tests take multiple days to show results, they cannot be used for decision-making in the ED.
In this situation, easy and fast confirmation of the symptoms with a point-of-care diagnostic tool could eliminate a lot of unnecessary antibiotic use without jeopardizing the patient’s health.