Sorting through EHR Interoperability: A Modern Day Tower of Babel That Corrects Problems for Clinical Laboratories, Other Providers

Despite the widespread adoption of electronic health record (EHR) systems and billions in government incentives, lack of interoperability still blocks potential benefits of digital health records, causing frustration among physicians, medical labs, and patients Clinical laboratories and anatomic pathology groups understand the complexity of today’s electronic health record (EHR) systems. The ability to easily and securely transmit pathology test results and other diagnostic information among...

Canadian Province Solves Biopsy Backlog by Adding Staff and Calling on Pathologists to Help with ‘Gross Examination’ Stage of Biopsy Tests

Physicians in Saskatchewan called for changes after wait times for anatomic pathology test results reached six weeks or more Anatomic pathologist and histopathologist shortages have plagued the single-payer healthcare systems in Canada and the United Kingdom (UK) in recent years. The consequence is increased wait times for physicians in both countries to receive medical laboratory test results, which increases wait times across the entire healthcare continuum. However, one Canadian province...

Controversy Surrounding Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and Paige.AI Highlights Risks of Data Sharing and Monetization in Anatomic Pathology

Patient privacy, ethics of monetizing not-for-profit data, and questions surrounding industry conflicts appear after the public announcement of an arrangement to grant exclusive access to academic pathology slides and samples Clinical laboratories and anatomic pathology groups already serve as gatekeepers for a range of medical data used in patient treatments. Glass slides, paraffin-embedded tissue specimens, pathology reports, and autopsy records hold immense value to researchers. The...

Researchers Easily Reidentify Deidentified Patient Records with 95% Accuracy; Privacy Protection of Patient Test Records a Concern for Clinical Laboratories

Protecting patient privacy is of critical importance, and yet researchers reidentified data using only a few additional data points, casting doubt on the effectiveness of existing federally required data security methods and sharing protocols Clinical laboratories and anatomic pathologists know the data generated by their diagnostics and testing services constitute most of a patient’s personal health record (PHR). They also know federal law requires them to secure their patients’ protected...

KFF Study Finds HDHPs and Increased Cost-Sharing Requirements for Medical Services are Making Healthcare Increasingly Inaccessible to Consumers

Though ACA reforms may have slowed healthcare spending, rapidly increasing deductibles and cost sharing requirements have many experts questioning if patients can afford care at all, despite the increased availability of insurance coverage Much of the debate surrounding efforts to replace and repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has centered on premiums as a central facet of out-of-pocket spending. However, new data from a Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) survey reveals that premiums are only...

Consumer Reaction to High-Deductible Health Plans and Rising Out-of-Pocket Costs Continues to Impact Physicians and Clinical Laboratories

Because many Americans are ‘concerned’ about how they would pay an unexpected medical bill, they now are seeking upfront information about treatment costs and financing options Clinical laboratories and anatomic pathology groups that depend on reliable sources of patient and test referrals are being impacted by a reduction in patients seeking care due to rising costs. Evidence continues to mount that high deductible health plans (HDHPs) and the overall rising cost of healthcare are straining...