Dispelling the 70% Claim with Laboratory's True Value
October 2017 - Vol. 6 No. 8 - Page #8

It is likely that the vast majority of clinical laboratory professionals have heard some version of the following claims at some point in their career: 70% of all medical decisions are based on laboratory results, or 70% of a patient’s medical record consists of laboratory data. This claim is also seen throughout the literature, though the exact statistic and wording sometimes vary. On occasion, both versions of the claim are added together to create the so-called 70/70 Rule; 70% of all medical decisions are based on laboratory data and 70% of a patient’s medical record is made up of laboratory data. In the face of such pervasive use, undoubtedly many laboratorians (and related health care professionals) take these statements as facts, despite a lack of any obvious attribution or correlation. Is it therefore time for clinical laboratories to stop touting this statistic and instead focus on real, established data depicting the impact of laboratory operations?

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