SUNConferences, 27th Annual Conference of the SA Institute for Industrial Engineering

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DESIGNING A MOBILE LABORATORY SOLUTION FOR RAPID TUBERCULOSIS TESTING BY MEANS OF THE CEPHEID® GENEXPERT® DEVICE
Marelise Hattingh, Louzanne Bam

Last modified: 2016-09-16

Abstract


Tuberculosis (TB) poses a major health risk in South Africa. The problem is particularly pronounced amongst employees in the mining industry, where South Africa has the highest TB incidence rate in the world. Diagnostic laboratory testing is a crucial component of managing TB and multi-drug resistant (MDR) TB. Mobile laboratories that are housed in vehicles are one option for reaching communities to expand diagnostic coverage. The World Health Organisation endorsed, GeneXpert® platform can be used for the diagnosis of TB and MDR-TB and is sufficiently robust to be used as a point-of-care device. The study reviews the GeneXpert®-based TB diagnosis process, to accurately determine the operations that are to be supported by the mobile laboratory. Consequently, this technology has enabled the development of a mobile laboratory for TB testing. This article describes the development of a concept design for such a mobile laboratory solution. The concept design considers various functional, safety and storage aspects as well as ergonomic principles to ensure an effective testing procedure along with the health and safety of the laboratory technician. A costing estimate for the design is also provided.  Owing to the high incidence of TB amongst employees in the mining industry, the design has been developed with deployment in peri-mining communities in mind.


Keywords


Design; Diagnostics; Ergonomics; GeneXpert®; Mobile laboratory; Tuberculosis