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Table 1 Characteristics of included studies

From: Primary care clinicians’ attitudes towards point-of-care blood testing: a systematic review of qualitative studies

Primary author (year) Country Type of study Type of POCT Participants’ experience of using POCTs Number of participants Type of primary care clinicians
Butler (2008) [16] Wales (United Kingdom) Semi-structured qualitative interviews A test to distinguish bacterial from viral infections using a finger-prick blood test No experience – participants discussed their perspectives on possible introduction of the POCT 40 GPs
Cals (2010) [17] The Netherlands Semi-structured qualitative interviews C-reactive protein POCT for lower respiratory tract infection and other common infections All participants had been using the POCT for nearly 3 years at the time of interview as part of a randomized trial 20 GPs
Cals (2009a) [18] The Netherlands Semi-structured qualitative interviews C-reactive protein POCT to differentiate serious from self-limiting lower respiratory tract infection 10 participants had used the POCT for at least two years at the time of interview as part of a randomized trial; 10 participants had no experience 20 GPs
Gillam (1997) [19] United Kingdom Semi-structured interviews and a focus group A range of POCTs including haematology (full blood count, platelets); chemical pathology (sodium, potassium, urea, creatine); glucose, cholesterol; bilirubin, alkaline phosphatase, aspartate transaminase; creatine kinase Participants worked in a health centre where POCTs were piloted; a nurse took blood samples using venipuncture, they were analysed onsite, and the results were made available to the GP at the end of surgery or immediately if requested Unknown GPs
Glover (2008) [20] Australia Group discussions + individual interviews INR (international normalised ratio) fingerstick test for monitoring patients on warfarin No experience (this is not stated explicitly but is assumed) 33 participants in total; unknown how many were GPs and nurses Hospital pharmacists, specialists, nurses, GPs. We included only the attitudes of GPs and nurses in the review (nurses treated patients in their homes as well as in hospital)
Stone (2007) [21] United Kingdom Semi-structured qualitative interviews HbA1c (glycated haemoglobin) finger-prick test for patients with type 2 diabetes Participants took part in a pragmatic, open, randomized controlled trial, where they gave some patients usual care and others POCTs for 1 year 11 GPs, practice nurses
Wood (2011) [22] Belgium, Hungary, Spain, Wales, Poland, Italy, England, Norway, The Netherlands Semi-structured qualitative interviews C-reactive protein POCT to aid management of acute cough/lower respiratory tract infection Participants from Norway routinely used the POCT; participants from other countries had no experience 80 Primary care clinicians