Fio Corporation has announced that it has received a grant financed by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to adapt its Fionet solution to connect rapid diagnostics and data in the fight against Ebola. By integrating intelligent mobile devices for diagnosis, treatment, and data capture with cloud-based information services, Fionet will deliver complete, reliable data within minutes from frontline health workers to remote health managers and organizations responding to the Ebola outbreak.
Only 18 laboratories in West Africa currently have the capacity to test suspected Ebola cases—four in Guinea, nine in Liberia, and five in Sierra Leone. It can take days for blood samples to be transported to these centers from patients at triage, and for results to return. The situation is further exacerbated by weak infrastructure, and patients can spend days in quarantine waiting to get results. This increases the chance of their infecting, or being infected by, others.
Several companies are working to bring to market rapid diagnostic tests that can reliably detect Ebola within minutes from a pinprick of blood or sample of saliva. Grant funding will make it possible for Fio’s Deki reader to objectively analyze results from these tests and then immediately transmit results and case reports to the Fionet database.
Patients will get results right away so they can be instantly isolated, released, or tested for other causes of illness. All this frontline data, available to remote managers via secure online access, will help them make significant gains in containment. In real time, managers will be able to monitor the epidemic, identify hot spots, direct scarce resources and supplies to where they’re most needed, and track potentially infected contacts of patients. Grant funding will contribute to the enhancement of Fionet mobile software to supplant the current cumbersome process with digital data collection.Read more on the Fio website