alexa Adding value to laboratory medicine: a professional responsibility.
Haematology

Haematology

Journal of Hematology & Thromboembolic Diseases

Author(s): Beastall GH

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Abstract Laboratory medicine is a medical specialty at the centre of healthcare. When used optimally laboratory medicine generates knowledge that can facilitate patient safety, improve patient outcomes, shorten patient journeys and lead to more cost-effective healthcare. Optimal use of laboratory medicine relies on dynamic and authoritative leadership outside as well as inside the laboratory. The first responsibility of the head of a clinical laboratory is to ensure the provision of a high quality service across a wide range of parameters culminating in laboratory accreditation against an international standard, such as ISO 15189. From that essential baseline the leadership of laboratory medicine at local, national and international level needs to 'add value' to ensure the optimal delivery, use, development and evaluation of the services provided for individuals and for groups of patients. A convenient tool to illustrate added value is use of the mnemonic 'SCIENCE'. This tool allows added value to be considered in seven domains: standardisation and harmonisation; clinical effectiveness; innovation; evidence-based practice; novel applications; cost-effectiveness; and education of others. The assessment of added value in laboratory medicine may be considered against a framework that comprises three dimensions: operational efficiency; patient management; and patient behaviours. The profession and the patient will benefit from sharing examples of adding value to laboratory medicine. This article was published in Clin Chem Lab Med and referenced in Journal of Hematology & Thromboembolic Diseases

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