Laboratory Services

Five traits of high reliability organizations: How to hardwire each in your organization

In this article, healthcare patient satisfaction guru Quint Studer advocates that healthcare organizations look to industries that have taken on the concept of high reliability as a central operating focus to dramatically improve patient safety.

Increasing cath lab capacity through Six Sigma - iSixSigma

This online article describes capacity improvement at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) catheterization lab. The cath lab is a particularly challenging environment because of high-volume, high-mix, and the need to meet scheduled, emergent, and urgent patient needs.

Our daily blood - how can labs tackle utilization of high-volume, low-cost tests?

Clinical Laboratory News
This article describes several strategies several hospitals around the country, including Cleveland Clinic, are using to reduce over-utilization of routine lab.

Reducing patient charges by eliminating amylase from lab panels - HBR Blog Network

One hospital was able to reduce patient charges by over $300,000 annually by reducing the frequency of amylase and lipase testing for ED patients with abdominal pain and other conditions.

Achieving small batch work flow in anatomic pathology to achieve faster TAT and better quality results 

This presentation at the 2012 Lab Quality Confab describes how a centralized anatomic pathology lab can be as efficient as a small local lab through applying lean and industrial engineering principles.

University of Windsor Industrial and Manufacturing Systems Engineering students help to improve lab processes in the ED at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre

Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre is considering implementing recommendations made by three fourth-year students at the University of Windsor Industrial and Manufacturing Systems Engineering as part of their capstone project. Ben de Mendonca, Josh Vandermeer and Andrew Phibbs, conducted an intensive examination of the system used by the emergency department to collect and label patient blood samples.

 Using Lean to Identify Process Improvement Opportunities and Improve Effectiveness of Transfusion Professionals

Susan F. South, senior consultant, ValuMetrix® Services and Jo Ann S. Hegarty, worldwide marketing director, ValuMetrix® Services provide a description of improvements in blood transfusion processing by applying lean concepts at 14 different laboratories in three different countries. Average savings per site was over $190,000 excluding savings associated with improved inventory management.

Reduction in Turnaround Time for Stat Specimen within a Regional Health System Clinical Laboratory 

Industrial engineering undergraduates at North Dakota State University complete study to reduce stat laboratory tests turnaround time failures.

Beginning the Lean Improvement Journey in the Clinical Laboratory

Using examples from several clinical lab redesigns, the sequence of steps utilized during a lean improvement effort are described.

SHS Reaching New Levels of Patient Safety through Improved Specimen Labeling

Results of a hospitalwide specimen labeling lean project is discussed.

SHS Engaging Staff in Lean Improvements for Patient Care Settings

Four lean projects were performed: pharmacy, lab, outpatient clinic and telemetry unit. Each project was meticulously documented in the presentation. Pre- and post- metrics are included, as well as a discussion of sustainability.

SHS Lean in the Laboratory and Radiology: A Patient Throughput Imperative

Lean improvements within the radiology suite and laboratory workspace yield notable improvements. Project benefits are discussed.

SHS Beginning a Hospital Lean Improvement Journey in the Clinical Laboratory

Motivation is made for performing lean improvements within the lab.