Alberta’s Next Round of Clinical Laboratory Consolidation Alarms Pathologists

Plans are to centralize all cervical cancer screening in just two Alberta medical laboratories

Ongoing efforts to further consolidate clinical laboratory testing in the Canadian Province of Alberta caused local pathologists earlier this year to go on record to specifically oppose a proposed consolidation of Pap Smear testing. Over the past 15 years, the Alberta government has never been timid in its efforts to use consolidation of clinical pathology laboratory testing as a way to achieve cost savings.

During the past winter, more than 30 pathologists in Alberta signed letters to Health Minister Gene Zwozdesky to protest the consolidation of all the province’s Pap Smear testing into just two clinical laboratories—one in Edmonton and one in Calgary. As a result of the government’s decision to consolidate this medical laboratory testing service, cytology laboratories in Lethbridge, Medicine Hat, Red Deer, and the University of Alberta Hospital would no longer perform Pap smear testing.