Laboratory automation emerges as a breakthrough trend at MEDLAB 2019

  • Experts at MENA region’s largest medical laboratory exhibition and congress highlight the major role laboratory automation plays in reducing human errors and improving patient care

Laboratory automation, which involves the use of technologies such as robotic devices to achieve greater efficiencies when carrying out diagnostic testing on humans, has emerged as a major trend at MEDLAB 2019, the MENA region’s largest medical laboratory exhibition and congress.

The MEDLAB Exhibition & Congress continues on the 6th & 7th February at the Dubai World Trade Centre, welcoming more than 19,610 medical laboratory industry professionals as well as 678 exhibiting companies from 51 countries and 15 international country pavilions over the four days of the showcase.

With over 70% of a physician’s clinical decisions said to be influenced by laboratory test results, diagnostic tests are an essential link in the healthcare chain. As such, clinical laboratory automation plays a major role in reducing avoidable human error and diagnosis delays as well as improving turnaround time, increasing productivity, effectively utilising resources and enhancing patient safety.

Commenting on the role of automation in the clinical laboratory, Dr Shakoor Malik, Chief Scientific Officer, Pure Health, said: “Automation has moved from “nice-to-have” for large reference laboratories to “must-have” for any clinical laboratory. – Automation,robotics and laboratory information systems are dominating the industry, which in return leads to quick and independent sample testing and reporting with reduction in operational costs.”

The global clinical laboratory industry was worth $180 bn to $210 bn in 2017 and is expected to increase at a CAGR of 6% to 8% till 2025. As more and more money is being spent on introducing newer technologies in the clinical laboratory, automation is expected to present several benefits including improving resourcing and enhancing the accuracy and efficiency of laboratory operations.

Denis Andrieu, Vice-President, Commercial Operations, bioMérieux, said: “It is very crucial to have automation in medical laboratories. There could be many advantages to acquiring advanced technology. This perhaps will address current challenges, such as, but not limited to, scarcity of having skilled lab technicians working 24/7 and the necessity to provide high-calibre quality results in terms of traceability, work standardisation and reliability.”

In addition to the exhibition, MEDLAB 2019 also provides an important platform for scientific exchange by bringing together more than 6,700 conference delegates and more than 110 speakers from 25 countries, in an effort to provide advanced medical laboratory techniques for better health.

While the challenges and effects of total laboratory automation was a major theme throughout the first day of the Congress, today (Tuesday, 5th February), delegates had the chance to attend the Immunology Conference which took place at MEDLAB for the first time. The conference provided a space for discussion on the latest trends and important issues concerning the widespread utilisation of immunological techniques for healthcare advancement.

Over the remainder of the Congress (6th & 7th February), delegates are able to attend a number of CME-accredited multi-disciplinary conferences covering topics such as microbiology, molecular diagnostics & genetics, laboratory informatics, haematology & blood transfusion, point of care testing (POCT) and cytogenetics & IVF.

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