Clinical Laboratories Should Be Aware of Potential Airborne Transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the Coronavirus That Causes COVID-19

‘Aerosol and Surface Stability’ study shows that the virus can remain infectious in aerosol form for hours and on surfaces for days By now, clinical laboratory workers, microbiologists, and phlebotomists should be fully aware of the potential for transmission on surfaces of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the novel coronavirus that causes Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The CDC’s latest Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report revealed that the coronavirus...

Advances in Gene Sequencing Technology Enable Scientists to Respond to the Novel Coronavirus Outbreak in Record Time with Medical Lab Tests, Therapies

Scientist described the speed at which SARS-CoV-2’s full sequence of genetic material was made public as ‘unprecedented’ and medical labs are rushing to validate tests for this new disease In the United States, headlines scream about the lack of testing for the novel Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). News reporters ask daily why it is taking so long for the US healthcare system to begin testing large numbers of patients for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. Yet, pathologists and...

XPRIZE Founder Diamandis Predicts Tech Giants Amazon, Apple, and Google Will Be Doctors of The Future

Strategists agree that big tech is disrupting healthcare, so how will clinical laboratories and anatomic pathology groups serve virtual healthcare customers? Visionary XPRIZE founder Peter Diamandis, MD, sees big tech as “the doctor of the future.” In an interview with Fast Company promoting his new book, “The Future Is Faster Than You Think,” Diamandis, who is the Executive Chairman of the XPRIZE Foundation, said that the healthcare industry is “phenomenally broken” and that Apple, Amazon,...

Two Boston Health Systems Enter the Growing Direct-to-Consumer Gene Sequencing Market by Opening Preventative Genomics Clinics, but Can Patients Afford the Service?

By offering DTC preventative gene sequencing, hospital leaders hope to help physicians better predict cancer risk and provide more accurate diagnoses Two Boston health systems, Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), are the latest to open preventative gene sequencing clinics and compete with consumer gene sequencing companies, such as 23andMe and Ancestry, as well as with other hospital systems that already provide similar services. This may provide...

Preparing Clinical Laboratories for Invasive Federal Enforcement of Fraud and Abuse Laws, Increased Scrutiny by Private Payers, New Education Audits, and More

Medical laboratory leaders need to take opportunities to stay abreast of government and payer activity, particularly as payer audits become tougher, say legal experts Even compliant clinical laboratories and anatomic pathology groups are reporting tougher audits and closer scrutiny of the medical lab test claims they submit for payment. This is an unwelcome development at a time when falling lab test prices, narrowing networks, and more prior-authorization requirements are already making it...

Clinical Laboratory Leaders Agree: Showing Value Is More Important than Ever as Healthcare Transitions Away from Fee-for Service Reimbursement

How medical laboratories can show value through process improvement methods and analytics will be among many key topics presented at the upcoming Lab Quality Confab conference Quality management is the clinical laboratory’s best strategy for surviving and thriving in this era of shrinking lab budgets, PAMA price cuts, and value-based payment. In fact, the actions laboratories take in the next few months will set the course for their path to clinical success and financial sustainability in 2020...