Home >> Tag Archives: Informatics/information technology (see also Automation; Digital pathology; Information systems) —

Tag Archives: Informatics/information technology (see also Automation; Digital pathology; Information systems) —

Look, wait, buy: labs share instrument plans

July 2018—“Robbie,” the autonomous service robot that transfers specimens for Florida Hospital’s central laboratory, may not quite be ready for his gold watch. But after five years of faithful service delivering samples between the different esoteric testing units, he’s nearing the end of his natural lifespan with signs of wear.

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Skirting the pitfalls of merging lab results

May 2018—“One of these things is not like the others” is a fun puzzle for kids in the context of Sesame Street. But it can be a vexing informatics challenge when you are managing data entered in fields in a database. For anyone charged with merging outside laboratory results into an institution’s electronic health record alongside results from an in-house laboratory, the differences can generate no end of headaches.

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Next-gen sequencing workflow in full spate

April 2016—With next-generation sequencing’s clear benefits—for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, and trials—come its new challenges, and clinical laboratories are doing what it takes and sharing how. Two plenary speakers at last year’s meeting of the Association for Molecular Pathology spoke of variant calling in the bioinformatic pipeline and validation, and of clinical reporting. Colin Pritchard, MD, PhD, of the University of Washington and one of the speakers, sees reporting a genomic sequencing assay as more like making a histologic diagnosis, which he calls craftwork, than reporting a sodium value. “That’s an idea that hasn’t really permeated yet,” he said.

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Broadening the productivity spectrum with middleware

March 2016—As James Beck, MT(ASCP), remembers it, middleware was introduced at his institution about the same time that the nursing department decided connectivity should be the province of the laboratory. When the concept of docking and interfacing glucose testing devices came on the scene around the turn of the millennium, that was a turning point, says Beck, who is point-of-care testing coordinator for the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center–St. Margaret, which uses the Telcor middleware solution QML.

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Interface validation: abort, retry, succeed

February 2015—When you go looking for problems, you’re bound to find them. That truism is especially pertinent in the arena of interface validation, as the team at New York’s North Shore-LIJ Health System discovered recently. The laboratory professionals there were charged with helping to implement the first phase of a joint venture with New York City’s Health and Hospitals Corp. (HHC), in which North Shore-LIJ would serve as the massive public health system’s primary reference lab.

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LIS to EHR: Is results transmission what it should be?

January 2015—While no one would question the virtues of accurate laboratory results, a recently concluded Q-Probes study is a new reminder that alone they’re not enough. Results should be reviewed before a lab goes live with a new interface that transmits results to the electronic health record, as well as when changes are made at the laboratory or EHR level that could alter test resulting. They also should be reviewed periodically, say the authors of the study, titled “Validating Laboratory Results in Electronic Health Records.”

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Full speed ahead through tight corners

December 2014—Like sailing ships, laboratories hope for fair winds as they chart their business plans. But smooth sailing is never a sure bet; rough sea conditions are an ever-present possibility that can make ships hard to steer. Perhaps the tide is with the vessel but the winds are against it. That’s a situation that could aptly describe a health care system facing a growing patient population at the same time that hospital admissions and reimbursement are in decline.

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