The Patient-focused Laboratory

Clinical laboratories work for patients. Their organization and management should always bear that first in mind. When a patient gets sick, it does not matter what day of the week or time of day it is. Laboratories should be organized to maximize the clinical usefulness of test results for action.

The frequency with with a lab test can be performed varies from never to constant monitoring of all parameters. Which lab tests should be done? How quickly should the results be available.

This presentation will address why physicians order laboratory tests, when the critical laboratory value came to be recognized, and how the brain-to-brain laboratory test loop came into existance.

Patient focus committees and modified delphi balloting can be useful techniques to establish best practices.