Shortage of Histopathologists in the United Kingdom Now Contributing to Record-Long Cancer-Treatment Waiting Times in England

Only 3% of histopathology departments that responded to the Royal College of Pathologists’ workforce census reported enough staff to meet clinical demand There is a chronic shortage of histopathologists in the United Kingdom (UK) and it is being blamed for cancer treatment waiting times that now reach the worst-ever levels, as National Health Service (NHS) training initiatives and other steps fail to keep pace with growing demand for diagnostic services. For US anatomic pathologists and...

New England Journal of Medicine Publishes Study Where Researchers Call Attention to Lack of Knowledge about Some Genes Included in Gene Panel Tests for Inherited Cancers

Researchers are concerned about the lesser-known genes included in the test and also point out that little published research exists to support use of these genes for clinical laboratory testing Gene-panel tests for inherited cancers were scrutinized by a group of 17 prominent international genetic researchers in a study published by the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) this summer titled “Gene-Panel Sequencing and the Prediction of Breast-Cancer Risk.” These experts pointed out that,...

Failure to Heed Patients’ Privacy Requests Raises ‘Big Data’ Concerns in England: Offers Lessons for How Clinical Pathology Lab Test Data Should Be Protected in U.S.

National Health Service agency admits to releasing information on 700,000 patients who opted out of nation’s new centralized medical-information database In the United States, the debate is ongoing about how healthcare data is used while at the same time protecting patient privacy. The outcome of this debate will be increasingly important for medical laboratories because—in order to deliver more value—labs will want to combine lab test data with other sources of clinical information. Thus, a...

Study of Urologists Who Refer Patients for Imaging to Facilities They Own is Published by the New England Journal of Medicine

Radiology and pathology associations are supporting a new bill in Congress to address self-referrals made by urologists Criticism is mounting against urologists who refer their patients to radiation providers in which they have an ownership relationship. This criticism is strikingly similar to concerns that pathologists and others have expressed about situations where urologists refer their patients to anatomic pathology laboratories in which they have an ownership relationship. Study about...

In Bristol, England, Errors in Anatomic Pathology Is an Issue That Refuses to Die

Critics of an inquiry into histopathology errors at the Royal Bristol Infirmary argue that as many as 6,800 cases over eight year may have errors in diagnosis In Bristol, England, the issue of serious errors in the anatomic pathology service of the Bristol Royal Infirmary (BRI) during the years 2000 to 2008 refuses to go away. Earlier this year, critics of an inquiry commissioned by the parent health trust became vocal once again after public notice was given of plans to consolidate...