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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).
September 4, 2015 1:08 PM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

The current Advance opinion poll question, "What is your laboratory's relationship with your facility's nursing staff?" has me thinking. As fellow Advance blogger Stephanie ...

September 2, 2015 9:30 AM by Irwin Rothenberg of CRI Lab Quality Advisor

According to CMS, there were 229,815 laboratories in the U.S. , in 2012, of which 150,256 were Certificate of Waiver sites. Stated another way, this means that some 65 percent of laboratories in the U.S. do not have any routine oversight. The number of waived tests has grown from just 9 tests in 1993 to 119 analytes using more than 5,400 test systems. From diabetes management and monitoring ...

August 31, 2015 6:11 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Like most managers with experience, I've seen a lot of resumes. Most are chronological, listing jobs worked in order from flipping burgers to working in a lab. Take it from me, it gets boring seeing so many timelines. I have never - repeat never - seen a resume that highlights what skills a person brings to the job.

Resumes that highlight skills are functional and are highly useful when there ...


A few days ago I was speaking to a physician, an ID specialist, who shared how frustrated he was with, as he put it,  "pharmacists telling us how to practice medicine." He is a member of a healthcare organization ...

August 26, 2015 7:43 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

As long as I'm on a how-to-find-a-job jag, it's only fair to mention Facebook. According to the website Statista, as of the second quarter of this year there are 1.49 billion active members on Facebook, a number that has steadily climbed since 2008.

Facebook and other ...

August 24, 2015 4:45 PM by Stephanie Noblit of New to the Lab

When I was in college, someone told me to say, "Yes," to every opportunity that arises. They said not to doubt yourself and let the negative thoughts consume you -- just say, "Yes." As someone that has struggled with self-doubt and low self-esteem most of my life, I took the advice to heart. It made me realize that the only way I could really know if I was capable ...

August 21, 2015 8:16 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

In a paper world, a resume is a one-page flier tacked on a pole along the highway of your career, part lost puppy notice and part Call Me! for this or that. Since paper is an ideal medium for display purposes, a resume can be dressed up with different colors, textures, and layouts to get you noticed.

In a virtual world, a resume is still written for paper. Fonts styles and sizes are carefully chosen ...

August 17, 2015 6:11 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Don't you love business buzz phrases like low hanging fruit, thrown under the bus, thinking outside the box, and take home message? I recently attended a jobs workshop and received a great take home message. In fact I got several. If only business meetings were all so productive.

Here are two:

Create a master application. A resume contains some of the information that goes ...

August 12, 2015 6:54 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Some time ago I read Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap... and Others Don't by leadership guru Jim Collins. The book describes why some companies are good and others are great. It's a worthwhile read. It turns out that being great isn't a huge leap, luck, or circumstance. It's a

August 10, 2015 12:48 PM by Stephanie Noblit of New to the Lab

Becoming a leader requires two thing things: believing you have leadership qualities within you and finding a mentor that will help polish and bring those qualities to the forefront. I took the first step to becoming a leader by applying for the ASCLS Leadership Academy. The ASCLS Leadership Academy, currently in its ninth year, is a program that is designed to prepare ASCLS members for leadership ...


The AACC recently issued a position statement on personalized medicine(PM). Much has been written about the emergence ...

August 7, 2015 6:44 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Since the laboratory is a mystery to many in your organization, it's a good idea to use any arbitrary rules as teachable moments. You might be surprised how many of these exist.

  • Specimen labeling rules
  • Specimen rejection rules
  • Wristband protocols
  • Compatible blood types
  • Reporting microscopic values

To an outsider, many of these seem subjective. ...

August 3, 2015 7:54 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Now that Windows 10 is here (it's free if you have Windows 7 or higher) laboratories should worry about computers still running Windows XP. These include desktops in offices, laptops, and data managers attached to an instrument.

The problem with Windows XP is more than being old (it was released in 2001), ugly (the "Teletubbies" theme is outdated, to say the least), and limited (it can't recognize more than ...


I was speaking to a friend who was complaining about how busy and tired she was this summer. In addition to working full time on the evening shift she has been shuttling kids to activities and summer camp. She has a seriously packed schedule which starts early in ...

July 29, 2015 7:23 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Laboratories have policies about what and when to call results to providers. Usually, these are critical values or those that significantly delay treatment e.g. a positive antibody screen in the blood bank. We all have at least one story about that time a provider on call couldn't be reached, was angry when he or she got the call, or claimed the patient belonged to another provider. As policies are written everywhere, ...



There are differences all around us: at work, in society, and even in our own family or circle of friends. We tend to focus on the differences a lot. Just look at the news and see how all of societal ills are being blamed ...

July 24, 2015 6:16 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

At a meeting our QI director at that time pulled out a folder and told me, "These are your troponin turnaround times." It showed hardly any times under 60 minutes, an industry consensus. Most of the times were over 90 minutes. When I returned to the laboratory to check the numbers from the information system, times were far lower.

In one study, ...

July 20, 2015 11:08 AM by Stephanie Noblit of New to the Lab

July is the time of the year when many MLS students are graduating and getting ready to enter the real world. While you may receive graduation gifts from friends and family, it's always good to buy a little something for yourself. The best investment you can make after graduating is joining a professional organization. Compared to all the other things you can buy, spending money on a membership ...

July 20, 2015 10:54 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

It makes sense for an employer to encourage employees to use their time off. It also makes sense to be as fair as possible. And here's where it gets interesting.

As a bench tech you may feel that your vacation time is arbitrarily denied or other techs are given preference. The same thing happens to managers. I've worked jobs where I could not have specific days off each month, no matter what, and others ...

July 16, 2015 6:11 PM by Michael Jones of ADVANCE Discourse: Lab

[*Editor's Note: The following is a guest blog post contributed by Biju Joseph, PhD, MT(ASCP), MB(ASCP).]

Patient-comfort oriented specimen collection techniques are vital for clinical laboratories for boosting customer base and revenue generation. The workflow could be less invasive, less painful blood collection devices and easy to ...

July 15, 2015 12:40 PM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Vacation time - PTO (paid time off) or ETO (earned time off) - is a benefit offered by many organizations. There are no federal regulations regarding what employers should do, but most who offer it do so on a seniority scale. The longer you work at an organization, the more time you earn off, with a peak average of 27 days a year for 15 or more years,

July 13, 2015 1:50 PM by Irwin Rothenberg of CRI Lab Quality Advisor

One of the top priorities for every laboratory should be the safety of its employees facilitated by creating a culture of safety consciousness, education, organization and accountability. Managing safety is more than having a top-down list of dos and don'ts, viewing educational videos, providing protective wear and having policies for incident management. A safe lab environment requires an ongoing ...

July 10, 2015 10:55 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Summer is hot, even in Maine. We do more outside, stay outside for longer periods of time, and sweat more. Employees may exercise by walking a lunch break or may sit outside during breaks and meals to enjoy the weather. Laboratory environments can be hot and humid, and changes in temperature between the laboratory and patient rooms can seem extreme. All this adds to a need to drink more water.

Lost fluids ...

July 7, 2015 11:54 AM by Stephanie Noblit of New to the Lab

On most job descriptions, the word "professional" usually appears. There is a lot of talk about professionalism, but what exactly does that mean? An occupation is considered a profession if it has specific criteria for education programs, an exam for entry into the profession, a professional organization, a body of knowledge and a code of ethics. For a professional to exhibit professionalism, ...

July 6, 2015 6:34 AM by Scott Warner of Stepwise Success

Catalase is an enzyme present in many living cells responsible for breaking down hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) into water (H2O) and oxygen (O2). It prevents peroxide, a byproduct of many reactions, from damaging cells. Catalase is also used in food and wastewater treatment industries.

The ...



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