Combining Medical Lab Automation and Process Improvement Delivers Big Gains for Pathology Laboratories

Here in Glasgow, Scotland, clinical laboratory directors share successes with TLA and Lean

Use of total laboratory automation (TLA) in clinical pathology laboratories now often involves use of process improvement and Lean techniques. That’s one insight that emerged from a special extended session on medical laboratory automation and process improvement at the Association for Clinical Biochemistry’s  annual Focus meeting in Glasgow, Scotland last week.

As a trend, it shows how process improvement and Lean are becoming important management tools for pathologists and clinical laboratory managers. In vitro diagnostics (IVD) manufacturers have recognized this development and often provide expertise or consulting assistance on process improvement methods to help medical laboratory managers. The goal is to use process workflow redesign and Lean Six Sigma methods to design the most efficient way to handle specimens, then support this work flow with the best laboratory automation solutions.