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ADVANCE for Laboratory is thrilled to welcome you to DeLABerations: A Medium for Lab Professionals and Managers, part of the Healthcare POV: Blog and Forum Community from ADVANCE. Our blogs tackle timely questions, offer advice and opinions about the laboratory field and connect professionals nationwide. We have provided tags to assist in locating topics of interest, a profile page to make uniquely your own and a list of our most active posts to keep you abreast of the latest discussions. We look forward to hearing more about your field from your Point of View (POV).
July 1, 2015 6:13 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Consultant Rebecca Mazin complains on the website All Business, "I have personally noted many examples of flagrant, highly inappropriate workplace texting." What about your laboratory? Chances are, it's happening regardless of policy enforcement. A 2011 Pew Research Center report


Have you ever found someone very difficult to work with no matter how you try? On the other hand you find others who consistently seem to adjust, cooperate and understand even if things don't go as planned.

June 25, 2015 3:55 PM by Irwin Rothenberg of CRI Lab Quality Advisor

The term, "creating a culture of." has become the cliché of the 2000s' ethos of competent management. It is no longer enough to lay down the rules, train your personnel and maintain documentation. Now, we must create an all-enveloping world of understanding, communication, compassion and comfort with the organization's operating standards. This new modus operandi applies to all organizational ...

June 25, 2015 6:00 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Layoffs, cutbacks, mergers, downsizing, and outsourcing, common in business, have come to healthcare and laboratories. What used to be a secure job with plenty of opportunity now is filled with unknowns in an uncertain economy. According to Forbes the average worker is interrupted seven ...

June 22, 2015 5:27 PM by Stephanie Noblit of New to the Lab

Since the day I decided I was going to major in medical laboratory science, I have been explaining to people what that is. I dread small talk conversations about what I do for a living because it's never an easy conversation to have. I've never had the luxury of answering this question with a simple answer. While people might not know exactly what goes on in other professions ...

June 19, 2015 7:14 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

ABC News reports Medical Professional as right in the middle of the most stressful jobs in America, right behind working parents, deployed military personnel, and police officer. These types of lists vary from survey to survey, but the reason stress is high is the same: when the stakes are high, ...

June 15, 2015 4:10 PM by Michael Jones of ADVANCE Discourse: Lab

After winning the Nobel Prize1 in 2001 for his research in cell division, Nobel Laureate Tim Hunt recently made headlines for his attempt to prove the existence of foot-in-mouth disease while speaking at the World Conference of Science Journalists (WCSJ). According to an article

June 15, 2015 9:17 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

A recent study in Population Health Management shows a link between unhealthy eating and lower work productivity. Sleep deprivation and smoking are also linked to hits on productivity. According to the study those between 30 and 39 were most susceptible, while ...


Labs are used to being regulated. It seems they are always preparing for inspection by the state, CLIA or some accreditation agency-or two. Very often laboratories think inspectors are being too hard, ...

June 10, 2015 6:33 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

While on safety rounds in our pharmacy one day I noticed a switch on their biosafety cabinet for an ultraviolet light. Is this used? I wondered. Neither of us used UV, but we decided to check, since both of our hoods were due for annual maintenance.

According to one of my sources, these lights are used in pharmacies. According to the biotech guy, laboratories use them. Who is correct?

There is ...

June 9, 2015 4:33 PM by Stephanie Noblit of New to the Lab

It's that time of year again -- when MLS and MLT students want nothing more than time to go by faster so they can run up on stage and grab that diploma. At the same time, though, time is passing too quickly, because the closer it gets to graduation; the closer it gets to the BOC exam. Excitement and anticipation combine with Red Bull-fueled, anxious and panicky late ...

June 5, 2015 6:31 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

A full time employee easily spends most of his or her time at work, especially when you include prep time (rearranging personal schedule, laundry and ironing, shopping for uniforms, travelling, homework, and all the worrying behind the scenes. You might think your hourly rate is fair, but if you factor in the actual hours devoted to your job you'd be disappointed.

Why not make sure a job is a good fit?

As ...

June 2, 2015 1:04 PM by Michael Jones of ADVANCE Discourse: Lab

The global fight against HIV has improved dramatically in the past decade, but the results of a recent study could lead to an enormous change in the way the virus is treated moving forward. An article from the New York Times noted how the study ...

June 1, 2015 6:04 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

It's easy to forget that interviewing is about buying and selling. It's easy to be so focused on getting a job that you forget the importance of getting the right job. The wrong job (if you haven't had one yet, just wait) can be miserable and all-consuming. Terrible jobs can cause burnout, cynicism, and make you dump laboratory medicine as a career. They can make you feel trapped, embarrassed, and helpless.

A ...

May 27, 2015 4:40 PM by Irwin Rothenberg of CRI Lab Quality Advisor

As a laboratory procedure readily performed in physician office settings, the simplicity of urine drug screening belies its importance and impact as the test results can be used to monitor patients' medication compliance, detect drug abuse, provide evidence in legal/forensic cases and improve workplace safety.

Urine is the preferred specimen for drug testing ...

May 27, 2015 6:03 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Customer service has its bromides: follow the Golden Rule (treat customers as you want to be treated); the Platinum Rule (treat customers the way they want to be treated); exceed, don't meet customer expectations, etc. But all this boils down to one simple assumption: the customer doesn't work for you.

Since laboratories are point of service businesses for outpatient customers, fast food restaurant experiences ...

May 26, 2015 12:29 PM by Christine Thompson of New to the Lab

This week, I began my blood bank rotation and was amazed by how many components (such as red cells, platelets and plasma) were dispensed for transfusion. Essentially, medical laboratory scientists are dispensing a biologic and providing care similar to that of pharmacists. Blood bankers verify the indications, contraindications and components being administered all in regards to a patient's history, ...

May 22, 2015 6:33 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Saturday Night Live used to have this recurring skit about a rude computer technician played by Jimmy Fallon. He'd appear and respond to polite questions with snarking geek jokes, yell "MOVE!" and type the solution in a few keystrokes. "Was that so hard?"

There's more than ...

May 18, 2015 1:07 PM by Stephanie Noblit of New to the Lab

Earlier this May, at ASCLS-Pennsylvania's state meeting, I attended an educational session entitled, "When Professionals Meet: Bridging the Gap between the Laboratory and Nursing." Like most medical laboratory professionals, my opinion of nurses isn't exactly a positive one. So, I was intrigued to hear what the speaker had to say. The presenter was Lucinda Manning, who works in the immunohematogy reference ...

May 18, 2015 6:03 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Lab techs typically think of "corrective action" as it relates to quality control. A QC point is out, the tech checks reagent levels, finds out the reagent level in the well is low, puts on fresh reagent, and repeats the controls. But was this really the problem? If the QC is in e.g. "corrected," we all assume yes.

Experience with methods teaches techs the most likely causes of error. It could be temperature, ...


 A little while ago I wrote a blog in which I referred to a great, balanced, intelligent article written about the medical laboratory  and printed in The US News and World Report. That article was remarkable by its rarity. I asked my readers to respond directly to the ...



Sometimes it seems like those of us in healthcare just love to hold meetings. We seem to even hold meetings simply to figure out how to plan more meetings. Not surprisingly, as busy professionals, always on some sort ...

May 13, 2015 6:01 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Imagine two offices in different parts of the building, and you work in both of them. Many times you need to share information between the offices, a task complicated by the distance between them and the time it takes to move papers, telephone contacts, etc. from one to the other. If only you could someone connect both offices seamlessly, your productivity would improve.

That's what it's like to have two ...

May 11, 2015 11:44 AM by Christine Thompson of New to the Lab

I'm sure every medical laboratory scientist heard this more times than they could count during this year's MLPW. Obviously, we are all excited because it means food, festivities and laughs as we celebrated, but my question for you is: why aren't we chanting this motto every day in the lab?

Although our bright, white lab coats are necessary, it is our skills, ...


An ongoing debate within the medical laboratory science profession for several years now has been the idea of  patients having direct access to the laboratory.

A new law recently passed in Arizona allows patients to order their own laboratory tests legally. This law goes the farthest, that ...



Glen McDaniel, MS, MBA, MT, CLS will encourage dialogue among clinical laboratorians, with the ultimate goal of not simply to commiserate, but to empower readers into full, rewarding practice; not simply to survive, but to thrive.

Join Scott Warner, MLT(ASCP), in exploring and sharing solutions. Scott's goal is to not just save time and effort but to also develop a team that discovers its own laboratory success.

The ADVANCE for Administrators of the Laboratory editorial staff will offer personal perspectives on issues in the clinical laboratory field and current healthcare environment.

COLA experts share their field experiences, insights and suggested resources to assist laboratories achieve a culture of quality patient care.

Perspectives from young medical laboratory professionals