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July 2012 - Posts

Stepwise Success

Working with Nurses
July 30, 2012 6:11 AM by Scott Warner
When there is an error caused by a breakdown in a process, usually two things happen at a management level: blame is assigned and a fix is applied. The blame can be inside or outside the department, personal or systemic. If outside the department, the Read More...
Contaminated Urines
July 25, 2012 6:02 AM by Scott Warner
Many laboratories have microscopic criteria to reflex to culture. Yours may include WBC and/or bacteria seen. You may also reject the sample for culture as contaminated if there are too many squamous epithelial cells (e.g. greater than 10 per LPF). How Read More...
Lab Order Sets
July 20, 2012 6:12 AM by Scott Warner
Traditionally, an inpatient medical record contains handwritten physician orders that are a mix of transcribed orders (e.g. a doctor telephones a nurse to request lab tests), free text orders written in a stream of consciousness style, and printed forms Read More...
Explaining Errors
July 16, 2012 6:03 AM by Scott Warner
Nurses are often go-betweens for doctors and lab techs, speaking for either. For the laboratory, it usually doesn’t matter if the nurse represents the doctor (“He wants a STAT potassium on the patient in 12”), but is the reverse true? Recently, for example, Read More...
Rude Doctors
July 11, 2012 6:07 AM by Scott Warner
A surgeon storms into the manager’s office and screams at the top of his lungs with patients within earshot. An OB gets in the face of a tech and tells her she almost killed a patient right in a patient waiting area. A pediatrician complains to a patient Read More...
Sins of Age
July 6, 2012 6:19 AM by Scott Warner
She’s rude. She’s too bossy. He doesn’t want to work. She doesn’t respect her elders. He doesn’t have a clue about email. We work in interesting times, in which three or four generations of techs may create conflict in your lab. Many of the social “sins” Read More...
Hoods and Shields
July 2, 2012 6:19 AM by Scott Warner
Many years ago I worked in a little STAT lab beside a draw station with a pass-through window. Hematology specimens were handed through the window to where a colleague and I set up sed rates, ran blood counts, made smears, etc. We were always busy. Our Read More...


About this Blog

    Scott Warner, MLT(ASCP)
    Occupation: Laboratory Manager
    Setting: Critical Access Hospital
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