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Evaluating STAT Testing Alternatives by Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs: Discussion (Part 2)

Another concern involves liability risk if a hospital is unable to provide results within a clinically acceptable time frame. Would this make the hospital more vulnerable to lawsuits? What would be the cost if the hospitals defense in a case is jeopardized because result reporting is slower than the accepted standard-of-care? Other issues concern the integrity of the specimen when transport is delayed. If a delay or other mishandling reduces the Po2 by only a few millimeters of mercury, a patient could be denied needed oxygen therapy. ventolin inhalers
To most effectively select configurations that will address these concerns, a careful evaluation must be made of each alternative. Continue reading

Evaluating STAT Testing Alternatives by Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs: Discussion (Part 1)

Evaluating STAT Testing Alternatives by Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs: Discussion (Part 1)The CALC technique can be used to estimate and compare the “true” cost of using different approaches for meeting a hospital laboratory s service demands. Other issues, however, need to be considered because both direct and indirect costs are associated with intangible factors that may be difficult to quantify. How, for example, can you estimate the cost incurred when nurses try unsuccessfully to find a physician to transmit results in the critical care unit, or when nurses repeatedly try to call the laboratory for test results? Delays in reporting results can cause clinicians to request additional tests that they would not otherwise need if results had been available while they were still at the patients bedside. Continue reading

Evaluating STAT Testing Alternatives by Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs: The Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs Model (CALC) (Part 8)

(f) Indirect Costs: Some costs cannot be traced to a specific test or to a particular piece of equipment. These expenditures are related to the nontechnical aspect of the laboratory (eg, hospital-allocated overhead, administrative expenses), while other costs are for materials used to run the lab, such as office supplies and other generic consumables (Table 4). Hospital accounting systems recover these indirect costs by adding an overhead charge as a percentage of known direct costs. Continue reading

Evaluating STAT Testing Alternatives by Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs: The Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs Model (CALC) (Part 7)

In Table 1, the costs of reagents and supplies to operate the stat lab systems were taken from actual invoices; the reagent cost is less for the backup unit because it is used only to handle peak testing volumes and periods when the primary unit is down. The electrode cost for both benchtop systems is the annual charge for a warranty contract guaranteeing electrode replacement. The syringe cost is for heparinized arterial blood gas (ABG) syringes. The capillary tube cost for the centrifuge is also for heparinized tubes. The quality control frequency for the benchtop system is assumed to be two levels twice per day. buy antibiotics online Continue reading

Evaluating STAT Testing Alternatives by Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs: The Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs Model (CALC) (Part 6)

If clinicians working in the critical care unit are able and willing to operate the testing equipment as part of their patient care responsibilities, it is likely that no additional labor charges would be incurred unless the testing load exceeds each nurse s ability to do it in the time available. This is not an unrealistic assumption; it has been shown that nurses spend more time tracking down laboratory results than would be required to operate bedside testing systems. It is assumed in Table 1 that nurses in the critical care unit will operate the bedside analyzer as a patient care responsibility, thus incurring no labor expenses other than for equipment training. The maintenance of the system would be the laboratory’s responsibility and would be incurred as a labor expense. buy ampicillin Continue reading

Evaluating STAT Testing Alternatives by Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs: The Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs Model (CALC) (Part 5)

Evaluating STAT Testing Alternatives by Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs: The Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs Model (CALC) (Part 5)Labor expenses can be categorized as being allocated or incremental. Allocated time occurs when staff who are already being paid perform a new task that is typically not in their job function. Incremental labor costs are incurred when new staff are hired or reassigned to perform specific job duties. Incremental labor increases overall costs while changes in work responsibilities do not generally increase labor expenses. Continue reading

Evaluating STAT Testing Alternatives by Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs: The Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs Model (CALC) (Part 4)

(c) Equipment Maintenance Costs: Maintenance
costs represent the expense of cleaning, repairing, and keeping each instrument operating throughout its expected life. Generally, daily checks of critical components and periodic maintenance checks are required by regulations. Since these daily checks are usually performed by the operator, the associated costs can be classified as a labor expense. Periodic maintenance is, sometimes, performed by the manufacturer for a fee as part of an extended warranty contract. The fee is usually 8 to 12 percent of the instruments list price, depending on the extent of service desired or required. Continue reading

Evaluating STAT Testing Alternatives by Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs: The Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs Model (CALC) (Part 3)

(b) Equipment Depreciation Costs: When hospitals purchase capital equipment, the cost is expensed over the number of years the equipment is expected to be used. The depreciation period for equipment ranges from three to ten years, depending on the hospitals accounting policies. In Table 1, we assume that the relocation of testing to a stat lab would require acquisition of new benchtop systems, including a primary and a backup blood gas/electrolyte analyzer and a centrifuge for hematocrit. Continue reading

Evaluating STAT Testing Alternatives by Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs: The Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs Model (CALC) (Part 2)

Record Cost Information
The cost of establishing and operating the testing service should be recorded for each configuration. Actual costs should be verified by referring to invoices. There will be situations wherein the costs of providing testing nearer to the patient are assessed in terms of their impact on central laboratory costs. In some cases, bedside or stat lab testing may actually add to the overall cost of providing testing (to achieve quicker turnaround times), while in other cases there may be central laboratory savings attributable to relocating testing closer to the patient. buy diabetes drugs

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Evaluating STAT Testing Alternatives by Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs: The Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs Model (CALC) (Part 1)

Evaluating STAT Testing Alternatives by Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs: The Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs Model (CALC) (Part 1)To identify which of two or more testing configurations is most cost-effective, laboratory managers need an all-encompassing assessment tool. The Calculating Annual Laboratory Costs (CALC) technique has been developed to provide a method for comparing costs of identical testing services from alternative testing configurations. cialis professional 20 mg Continue reading

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