Using POC Testing Technology to Diagnose Breast Cancer

May 17, 2015

6:00 pm

When many people think of technology, they instantly have a mental image of a smartphone, laptop or the latest Hi-Def television. Although these things certainly enrich our lives and provide platforms for products and services that are offered by startups, there are many other important usages of technological advancements.

For example, the medical field has been drastically changed by technology, and this makes it easier to diagnose illnesses and improve the quality of life for patients around the world. However, there are still 40,000 annual breast cancer deaths in the U.S., and the mortality rate is much higher in several other countries.

The Worldwide Impact of Cancer

Breast cancer affects an estimated 1.38 million people annually worldwide, and statistics indicate that 458,000 of these people will die from the disease. In other words, the global fatality rate is 33 percent, which is 16 percent higher than the United States. According to POC Medical Systems, the vast majority of women who contract breast cancer live in low or middle-income neighborhoods. Additionally, fewer than 4 percent of all women in the eligible age range actually get regular mammograms.

Improving These Stats with Technology

POC Medical Systems offers point-of-care breast cancer screening at dramatically reduced costs in areas where lower and middle-income individuals live. Their major focus at the current time is on helping reduce the breast cancer fatality rate in Third World Countries. At least 80 percent of the people worldwide live on $10 or less per day, and some Third World Nations average as little as $1. When you consider that the typical cost of a mammogram in these areas is a staggering $100, it is easy to understand why so many women do not receive the care that they need.

To help offset this problem, POC Medical Systems has created new screening technology, and they offer breast cancer testing for as little as $2 per person in Third World Countries. According to the company’s CEO, Sanjeev Saxena, they have already given these highly discounted screenings to millions of women in the highest risk areas.

How Does POC Medical Systems Help the People Most in Need?

Instead of setting up clinics that are far removed from the lowest income areas, POC Medical Systems sets up their point-of-care sites in the neighborhoods where their assistance is most needed. This is based on the company’s theory that providing easy access to affordable and effective testing techniques is the best way to reduce cancer mortality rates. This is also highlighted in the five year survival rate by stage. Women in higher income areas who live in First World Countries can benefit from a nearly 100 percent survival rate for Stage I patients, but those who do not find out until they reach Stage IV only have a 22 percent chance of surviving.

With figures like these, it is clearly imperative for companies to continue using technological advancements for the greater good. By improving availability and reducing the cost, POC Medical Systems could make a big impact in global breast cancer survival rates.

Image Credit: Radiotherapy Results via Flickr

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Holly Chavez is a former engineer and current writer and entrepreneur. She enjoys writing informative articles about technology and is amazed at all the new inventions and strides that happen every day. Holly also cares about the environment and is involved with writing projects and activism that supports sustainability, Green living and lowering the carbon footprint.