Boston Medical Center (BMC) is a private, not-for-profit 514-bed academic medical center and legacy safety net hospital serving a diverse global patient population. BMC recently implemented a new HIV-1/HIV-2 Qualitative RNA PCR (HIV RNA QUAL) cleared by the US Food and Drug Administration to (1) replace antibody discrimination follow-up testing after a reactive fourth-generation (4G) serology screen and (2) use as a stand-alone diagnostic for suspected seronegative acute HIV infection.
This report summarizes the results of a production monitor for the first 3 months postimplementation.
The monitor characterized test utilization, diagnostic turnaround time, impact on send-out testing, results reflexed to HIV RNA discrimination follow-up, and discrepancies between screening and HIV RNA results that necessitated additional investigation. Another element was the novelty of using HIV RNA QUAL while awaiting the existing Centers for Disease Control and Prevention HIV testing algorithm update. The 4G screening components and the HIV RNA QUAL were also used to create an algorithm specific to and compliant with current guidelines for screening patients on HIV preexposure prophylaxis.
Based on our findings, this new test algorithm may be reproducible and instructive at other institutions.

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