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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).
LATEST POSTS FROM EACH BLOG
March 2, 2015 10:30 AM by Irwin Rothenberg of CRI Lab Quality Advisor

We live in an age of increasing individualism facilitated by technology that allows immediate access to information in the format, the setting, and the time of our own choosing. This change is occurring as rapidly as we can adapt to it, accompanied by social media-facilitated feedback, commentary and communication. These are new manifestations of individual empowerment. All phases of our society ...


 
February 27, 2015 4:29 PM by Michael Jones of ADVANCE Discourse: Lab

Thanks to the quick evolution of improved genetic sequencing capabilities, the concept personalized medicine has changed the way clinicians and physicians are thinking about patient treatment. Traditionally, the trial and testing period for clinical drugs going through the FDA approval process can be challenging, lengthy and exhausting for all parties involved - especially the patients. A recent ...


 
February 27, 2015 6:01 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Healthcare is hazardous to your health. A 2010 Bureau of Labor Statistics report lists the highest number of workplace injuries in healthcare (176,380), followed by manufacturing (127,410) and construction (74,950). Nearly half of lost workdays caused by injury happen in the healthcare sector, four ...


 
February 23, 2015 5:44 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Interviewing for a job is stressful, especially if you don't have a job and need one. It's easy to forget that you're not just buying what an employer is selling - working conditions, pay rate, benefits, culture, etc. - but shopping. What should you be shopping for?

Like most shopping, we want value.

The ...


 

Kidney disease is one of the most significant chronic ailments affecting Americans. Renal disease is often a sequela of one of several maladies that plague Americans: diabetes, hypertension, glomerulonephritis, ...


 
February 18, 2015 9:40 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Hospital acquired anemia can be an issue if multiple tubes are collected several times a day. Over time, small amounts of blood (5 mL is a teaspoon) add up. I've developed a "short draw" protocol to use low volume tubes and chart the amount drawn for patients if a physician has a concern.

However, it's common to draw a rainbow - one of every color - when time is a factor. This has been common practice in ...


 
February 17, 2015 3:35 PM by Michael Jones of ADVANCE Discourse: Lab

A combination of the continued national debate over the connection between autism and vaccines -- despite the hypothesized link having long-since been disproved -- and events like the measles outbreak spawning from Disneyland have ...


 
February 16, 2015 12:23 PM by Irwin Rothenberg of CRI Lab Quality Advisor

We are most accustomed to using (root) cause analysis in the context of incident management investigations -- that, by tracing the sequence of events backwards, and asking the what, how and why questions, we can determine the true cause of these events. This allows us to respond in the most effective manner not only to correct the damage already done, but to put changes in place to prevent a ...


 

 

I  was speaking to a group of laboratorians including a pathologist, and the conversation turned to laboratory inspections. At first everyone was on the same page: inspections are ...


6 comments  
February 13, 2015 6:56 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Working for a micromanager is demoralizing, and what's even worse is when you can't leave. Maybe you're a new graduate and it's your first job, you really like your coworkers, you need the money because you have kids that just started college, or there just are no other jobs in the area. Feeling stuck can be a nightmare that never ends.

The Harvard Business ...


 
February 9, 2015 5:11 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Merriam Webster defines micromanage as "to try to control or manage all the small parts of (something, such as an activity) in a way that is usually not wanted or that causes problems." While managers are sometimes labeled as such, micromanagement is really a style of management. It can be taught, mentored, and embedded in a culture. Sometimes ...


 
February 4, 2015 11:40 PM by Michael Jones of ADVANCE Discourse: Lab

The electronic cigarette has been hailed as a significantly safer alternative to regular cigarettes, delivering nicotine through vapor rather than smoke, but little is known about their potential side long-term effects. An NPR article


 
February 4, 2015 5:45 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

When I blogged about looking at inpatient charts in 2012, we had implemented CPOE (Computerized Physician Order Entry) to a limited degree. Now that it's commonplace and there are few written physician orders, it's still useful to look at charts.

Each morning we take 15-30 minutes to ...


 

 

The mantra of most laboratorians is, "We get no respect." The wrenching truth about that is that it is a self-fulfilling prophesy. We provide the majority of empirical data used to make clinical decisions, we are among the ...


9 comments  
January 30, 2015 6:00 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

There's a misconception in management circles that people need to know each other socially to get along. If I hang out with you in a non-stress environment where we can avoid talking about work I'll find out that you're really a great person and not just a boss, charge nurse, or other demanding coworker.

I've always found these events painful, to say the least. Nothing seems more forced to me than the boss ...


 
January 27, 2015 12:33 PM by Michael Jones of ADVANCE Discourse: Lab

Between the attention attracted by the 2014 movie, "Still Alice," and the release of new studies, Alzheimer's disease has been a prominent topic of conversation lately. For patients and their families, the symptoms are all too familiar, ...


 
January 26, 2015 6:00 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

As professional data collectors, lab techs are poor data collectors, at least when it comes to quality assurance. I'm not sure why this is. It could be a flaw in the collection method, distractions that take priority, measurement interference with the process, or a combination of factors.

For example, we tried to collect data on how many hemolyzed samples we received collected by the ED. Easy, right? Create ...


 
January 23, 2015 4:37 PM by Michael Jones of ADVANCE Discourse: Lab

While the Ebola outbreak continues to impact much of West Africa, it appears to be starting to fade at last. According to a recent article in the New York Times, healthcare companies GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Merck have will be introducing vaccines ...


 
January 21, 2015 5:58 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

One of my management resolutions will be easy to keep in 2015, because it's already happening: fewer meetings. The monthly, boring department meeting is so entrenched in corporate culture it's difficult to imagine work without it. But once gone people don't miss it.

The New York Times offers ...


 

Martin Luther King Jr.  was born in Atlanta, Georgia on January 15, 1929. Best known as "the slain civil rights leader" his mission was fighting for civil rights through nonviolent means.  His birthday is now a federal holiday celebrated ...


1 comments  
January 16, 2015 6:01 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

A work culture defines how things are done. Susan Heathfield defines this as a workplace personality - a good definition - writing it "is made up of the values, beliefs, underlying assumptions, attitudes, and behaviors shared by a group of people. Culture is the behavior that results when a group arrives ...


3 comments  
January 12, 2015 5:16 PM by Irwin Rothenberg of CRI Lab Quality Advisor

The development of personalized medicine holds the promise of radically changing the practice of medicine from reactive to proactive. Historically, medical treatment was initiated as a response to the symptomatic onset of diseases -- and, because we haven't fully understood the genetic and environmental factors that cause diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer's and diabetes, our efforts to treat ...


 
January 12, 2015 6:03 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Many years ago when I was taught to run a Monospot, I was instructed in the fine art of rotating the card in a figure 8. The goal was to equally rotate the mixtures in all circles while scanning for agglutination. But in case that was too difficult, vendors marketed a slow-motion rotator that did the same thing. That was progress for the time: walk away serology.

I doubt any of those mixers are still ...


 


 For several years now there has been talk about a doctorate in Medical Laboratory Science (DCLS). This idea was advanced by ...


6 comments  
January 7, 2015 6:03 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

As a profession, we are used to having the answers: glucose values, compatible units of blood, pathogens in a urine culture. As simple as this seems to outsiders who see lab techs as mere button pushers, we know there is a lot of judgment involved. In many cases "the answer" is ambiguous or at least far from simple. We have to answer, "Does it matter what it is?"

For example, a few weeks ago our micro techs ...


 

ABOUT OUR BLOGS

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.

The Politics of Healthcare covers the latest developments in healthcare policy and legislation.

This staff blog focuses on good news and exciting events throughout the lab industry.

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