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Improve Microbiology Specimen Collection in the OR
By Lisa LeBlanc, MT(ASCP)

The catalyst for improving microbiology specimen management was the receipt of bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) specimens in the wrong container and with incorrect or incomplete order information from the operating rooms. With a new surgeon performing BAL procedures, we decided to meet with one of our OR nurse educators to discuss their process for handling BAL specimens. This then unveiled that the OR was using a "cheat sheet" to indicate what containers to use for what specimens, and it contained incorrect information for BALs, as well as incorrect handling procedures for other microbiology specimens. With this new understanding, laboratory leadership determined that changes were necessary.

CLICK HERE to read more about steps your laboratory can take to help improve communication between the laboratory and the OR and ensure proper specimen collection procedures in the OR setting.

Do You Know . . .
The latest issues facing clinical laboratories when it comes to waste management?

CLICK HERE to read Current Issues in Laboratory Waste by Dan Scungio, MT(ASCP)SLS, CQA(ASQ), for more information on this important topic.

Editor’s Pick

The Confusion About Quality
By Jennifer Dawson, MHA, DLM(ASCP)SLS, FACHE; and May Oo, BS, LSSGB

CLICK HERE to read The Confusion About Quality by Jennifer Dawson, MHA, DLM(ASCP)SLS, FACHE; and May Oo, BS, LSSGB, wherein the authors discuss the haze around what constitutes quality in the laboratory leading to confusion about the quality role. It is important to clearly define the role of the quality function in the clinical laboratory (often referred to as the Quality Assurance [QA] or Quality Management [QM] department) and to help laboratory leaders optimize this important function.

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