Point of care testing for INR monitoring: where are we now?

Br J Haematol. 2004 Nov;127(4):373-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2141.2004.05154.x.


Point of care (POC, or near patient) testing for measurement of the international normalized ratio (INR) has facilitated the devolution of service delivery from the traditional hospital outpatient setting. However it must be undertaken within the confines of safe practice involving quality control procedures. The evaluation of INR POC tests should be closely related to the clinical issues of management and, specifically, improving the quality of care. One benefit of POC testing is in the increased motivation that some practitioners feel, being able to perform diagnostic tests without sending samples to a laboratory. POC for INR testing within primary care eliminates the delay in waiting for the result to be processed by the hospital laboratory, and the subsequent delay in informing the patient of their dosing advice. This review describes the utilization of POC testing outside the laboratory setting to develop models of care for oral anticoagulation management.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anticoagulants / therapeutic use
  • Blood Coagulation Disorders / diagnosis
  • Blood Coagulation Disorders / therapy
  • Evaluation Studies as Topic
  • Humans
  • International Normalized Ratio / standards*
  • Point-of-Care Systems / standards
  • Point-of-Care Systems / statistics & numerical data*
  • Quality Control
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • Anticoagulants