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Target Pre-Analytical Errors for Quality Improvement
By Qing H. Meng, PhD, MD, DABCC, FAACC

Any variation or unexpected condition change during pre-analytic phase processes can adversely affect laboratory test results, thereby leading to patient mismanagement and compromised patient safety. In recent decades, vast improvements and advancements in methodology, instrument technology, automation, standardization, and quality control have dramatically reduced analytical-phase errors leaving the pre-analytical phase as the area wherein most errors affecting test results occur. Further, pre-analytical phase variables affect a wide range of laboratory testing, which account for up to 70% of total laboratory errors. Accordingly, a focused effort should be made to mitigate and eliminate error causation in the pre-analytical phase. CLICK HERE to read more about ways your laboratory can reduce and mitigate pre-analytical phase errors.

Do You Know . . .
The best ways to manage changes in syphilis diagnostic testing? CLICK HERE to read Navigating Syphilis Diagnostic Changes (part 1 of a 2-part series) by Aaron Samson, MBA, MB(ASCP)CM; the first part of his laboratory’s transition from the manual rapid plasma reagin flocculation test to a rapid plasma reagin (RPR) assay-based automated test system; a move largely precipitated by a desire to obviate the manual requirements of the card flocculation test coupled with the goal of meeting expected turnaround time (TAT) metrics.

Editor’s PickEditor’s Pick

CLICK HERE to read Investigation of Rapid Blood Gas Culture Diagnostic Testing by Ripal Jariwala, PharmD, BCIDP, AAHIVP, Nicholas Piccicacco, PharmD, BCIDP, AAHIVP, and Kristen Zeitler, BS, PharmD, BCPS, wherein the authors discuss how rapid blood culture diagnostic assays can minimize the time from positive blood culture to organism identification (a range of 1 to 5 hours), and in some instances, enable antibiotic susceptibilities to be available within 7 hours. This substantial reduction in time needed to produce useful patient information should allow providers to make more timely and meaningful clinical interventions. Part 1 of a 2-part series.

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