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Screening

ScreeningA screening is to find out suspected or potential patients from a superficially healthy population by using a test that is easy to perform and interpret, acceptable, accurate, reliable, sensitive and specific. A screening test result is not a diagnosis. A positive or suspected positive result from screening test indicates that the respondent should be designated to see a specialist for further diagnosis. Screening interventions are designed to identify disease in a community early, thus enabling earlier intervention and management in the hope to reduce mortality and suffering from a disease. Although screening may lead to an earlier diagnosis, not all screening tests have been shown to benefit the person being screened; over diagnosis, misdiagnosis, and creating a false sense of security are some potential adverse effects of screening. For these reasons, a test used in a screening program, especially for a disease with low incidence, must have good sensitivity in addition to acceptable specificity.