Mayo Clinic Laboratories Used Ingenuity, Flexibility, and Teamwork to Fast-Track COVID-19 Testing Capacity, Including Hiring Hundreds of Lab Workers

As coronavirus pandemic emerged, the Minnesota reference laboratory surged its testing capacity from 2,600 to 20,000 samples per day in an effort to meet ever-increasing demand Over the past several years, medical laboratory workforce shortages worldwide have challenged clinical laboratory managers to process increasing numbers of clinical laboratory tests with fewer staff. But that did not prepare them for the Herculean task of processing millions of tests each week! According to the CDC’s...

Connecticut and Maine to Utilize ‘Episode of Care’ Payment Models for State Employees and Retirees

Also called a ‘bundled payment’ model, under this plan, hospitals and clinical laboratories will receive ‘lump sums’ for certain healthcare procedures Employers and insurers continue to move healthcare providers away from fee-for-service (FFS) payment models and toward value-based reimbursement arrangements, also called Pay for Performance or bundled-payment models. While intended to save money, such payment models can have adverse financial consequences for clinical laboratories that are...

Walmart, Quest Diagnostics, and DroneUp Collaborate on Pilot Project to Deliver COVID-19 Laboratory Tests to Consumers in Select Cities

Coronavirus pandemic expected to spur wider acceptance of drone delivery services for clinical laboratory specimens and medical supplies Routine delivery of clinical laboratory specimens and medical supplies by drone moved one step closer to reality with news that Walmart (NYSE:WMT), Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX), and DroneUp of Virginia Beach, Va., are partnering to bring at-home self-collection COVID-19 test kits to residents of several areas hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. In its race to...

University of Vermont Microbiology Laboratory Identifies Inefficiencies When Performing Pooled Testing for COVID-19

The key to success with pooled testing, says the lab’s director, is having the right personnel and equipment, and an LIS that supports the added steps Experts believe pooled testing for COVID-19 could reduce the number of standard tests for SARS-CoV-2 by conserving testing resources and cutting lab spending on tests and testing supplies. However, some clinical laboratories have found pooled testing causes inefficiencies due to the lab’s lack of staff, limitations of existing equipment, and...

Healthcare Companies and Health Systems Continue to Grow Through Mergers and Acquisitions Despite COVID-19 Pandemic

Consolidation of hospitals and health systems means consolidated medical laboratory services as well, and that impacts laboratory revenue and staff Though COVID-19 shifted many healthcare systems’ priorities in 2020—including quite dramatically altering the priorities of the nation’s clinical laboratories—the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic does not appear to have slowed the pace of healthcare mergers and acquisitions. Many such deals are kept secret until closed by Dec. 31. They are then then announced...

Critical Shortages of Supplies and Qualified Personnel During the COVID-19 Pandemic is Taking a Toll on the Nation’s Clinical Laboratories says CAP

As demand for SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus testing increases, leaders of the College of American Pathologists meet online to brainstorm possible solutions to the crisis In September, the College of American Pathologists (CAP) began its series of “virtual media briefings” given by leading pathologists and physicians at the forefront of COVID-19 testing which are designed to “offer insights and straight talk” on the crisis confronting today’s clinical laboratories. During the third virtual meeting on...