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  • Waived Testing: The Last Mountain

    Have you noticed how much more attention waived testing is getting these days? We know that CLIA has defined waived tests as laboratory procedures which employ methodologies that are so simple and accurate as to render the likelihood of erroneous results negligible; and which pose no reasonable risk of harm to the patient if the test is ...
    Posted to CRI Lab Quality Advisor (Weblog) on January 20, 2014
  • Do You Follow Procedures?

    Procedures are the core of every laboratory, but are they followed? Watching people work, I wonder. Most techs have workarounds for the trivial and the critical, from organizing an instrument run to blood bank serology to reading culture plates. It isn’t that tasks are difficult to standardize; procedures can be incomplete, lacking details of ...
    Posted to Stepwise Success (Weblog) on January 13, 2014
  • Create a New Year’s Vision-not a Resolution

    A new year starts in just a few hours and this is traditionally the time to make resolutions.  Some people are just pressured into resolving to do better because it is what is expected. Others sincerely pledge to make some positive change in their lives. The sad reality is, however, that most new year’s resolutions fail. It ...
  • Real People, Real Problems

    Teamwork isn’t just coaching, sharing goals, cheerleading, and celebrating success. Most of us are emotionally vested in work. We want to do well and feel good when we are associated with a place that cares about the people who work for it. And more importantly when we know coworkers care about each other. If, for example, you work at a lab ...
    Posted to Stepwise Success (Weblog) on December 30, 2013
  • Medical Lab Science is Still a Growth Career

      Just this week, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released its report of job prospects for the next ten years (actually between 2012 and 2022).     Not surprisingly, healthcare topped the list of attractive fields, projected to grow at almost three percent, adding an estimated 5 million new workers- ...
  • Using FORD with Patients

    Henry Ford once said, “Whether you think you can, or think you can’t -- you’re right.” Ironically, something called the FORD technique can help us when we are struck dumb to make small talk. Caught in an elevator, sitting in the cafeteria, or waiting for a patient to return in a room with a family member, you’ve probably felt that creeping panic ...
    Posted to Stepwise Success (Weblog) on December 6, 2013
  • Time On, Time Off

    Sometimes, I wonder if life is work between breaks or breaks between work. Conventional wisdom states if we love our jobs it isn’t really work, but that’s bargaining with reality. We all need a break. Taking time off is important. Despite the health benefits of time off, including a reduced risk of heart disease and improved reaction times, we ...
    Posted to Stepwise Success (Weblog) on November 27, 2013
  • How To Reach Consensus

    Merriam-Webster defines consensus as “a general agreement about something: an idea or opinion that is shared by all the people in a group.” That’s a pretty good definition. Examples in the laboratory: There is a lack of consensus about the holiday schedule. The decision to order additional O units was made by consensus. If ...
    Posted to Stepwise Success (Weblog) on November 18, 2013
  • Junk Data Means Junk Decisions

    Our quality improvement projects have often involved collecting data for a period of time and then deciding what to do with it. This proactive approach that relies on performance measurement should be more relaxing than responding to negative feedback, which is often the case with improvement projects. It’s difficult to strip down and redesign ...
    Posted to Stepwise Success (Weblog) on November 13, 2013
  • Labs Are Vital 2.0 is Here

      In 2006, industry giant, Abbott Diagnostics made a major investment in medical laboratory science by launching a campaign called Labs Are Vital. They spent quite a bit of money and expended human resources in setting up a website and trying to energize the medical laboratory community to help spread the message to the wider ...
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