SymposiumDemographic Trends, Health Economics, and Rapid Response in Southeast Asia Focus on Thailand and the Point of CareKost, Gerald J. MD, PhD; Wongboonsin, Kua PhD; Peungposop, Narisara MA; Chen, Huiya MA; Wu, Ruojun MAAuthor Information From the Point-of-Care Testing Center for Teaching and Research, School of Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA (Dr Kost); the College of Population Studies, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand (Dr Wongboonsin and N. Peungposop); and the Economics Department, University of California, Davis, CA (H. Chen and R. Wu). Funded in part by an educational grant from Roche Diagnostics, Ltd., Thailand; the POCT•CTR, School of Medicine, University of California at Davis, CA; a Fulbright Scholar Award (G.J.K.); and the Edward W. and Ora I. Kost Foundation. Reprints: Gerald J. Kost, MD, PhD, Director, POCT•CTR and Professor, Medical Pathology, School of Medicine Faculty, Biomedical Engineering, University of California, Davis Director, Clinical Chemistry, UCD Health System, 506 Citadel Drive, Davis, CA 95616 (e-mail: [email protected]). Point of Care: The Journal of Near-Patient Testing & Technology: December 2003 - Volume 2 - Issue 4 - p 249-252 Buy Abstract The Faculty of Medicine, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, sponsored a symposium on point-of-care testing (POCT). Four papers from the symposium describe the status of POCT in a university hospital, critical care, a private hospital, and networked primary care units in Thailand. The authors introduce relevant demographic trends and health economics in Thailand and Southeast Asia, and emphasize the need for collaborative teamwork in arriving at acceptable strategies to fulfill societal, economic, and medical goals. Currently, projections reveal increasing populations of skilled workers (the “demographic dividend”), who will require health care support for maximum productivity, and of elderly, whose ranks will double during the next 2 decades, thereby creating a burden on medical services. The authors recommend quickly and efficiently addressing these challenges, in part through the cost-effective and selective implementation of POCT. © 2003 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.