Flu Test and Treat

19th December 2023

An independent evaluation was commissioned from Unity Insights to provide real-word evidence through a mixed methods evaluation consisting of quantitative, qualitative and health economic analyses. 

The quantitative analysis primarily focussed on activity and outcomes data to demonstrate the cost and health benefits, while the qualitative element arm included patient and staff surveys, as well as semi-structured interviews to understand additional benefits and gain insight behind the quantitative findings. Finally, a budget impact model was developed to help demonstrate the potential impact which could be observed in other geographies, should the pathway be taken up more widely. 

The pathway project evaluation was designed through a collaborative working agreement between Innovation Agency, the Academic Health Science Network for the North West Coast (IA), Roche Products Limited and Roche Diagnostics Limited. 

The purpose of the pathway service evaluation was to demonstrate whether using rapid diagnostics to diagnose Flu A/B and SARS CoV 2 alongside digital reporting in the community could: 

  1. Improve patient outcomes. 
  1. Reduce the need for hospitalisations. 
  1. Reduce the burden on secondary care. 
  1. Identify any further system benefits. 


Between December 2022 and March 2023, 9 GP practices in Yorkshire and the North West took part in a pilot for a new flu patient community pathway using a point of care test​. A target population of around 43,000 clinically at-risk patients were encouraged to visit their GP to take a flu test upon developing flu symptoms​. Based on national averages for flu surveillance, an estimated 17 hospitalisations, 4 deaths, and 1 ICU admission were avoided due to the pilot​. 


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