In most busy clinics, lab result solutions boost productivity, accuracy, and profitability. Using a well-designed results management application in the lab makes regular workflow requirements more efficient and effective.
A streamlined workflow reduces operational cost and improves the lab’s bottom line. That’s why a recent survey showed that the two top priorities among 51 percent of respondents in a lab informatics study were data analytics and connectivity. In contrast, 21 percent said their top priority was EMR integration.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, many lab managers realized that the reimbursement rates for coronavirus tests didn’t cover their full testing costs.
Manual processes are scattered throughout the pre-analytical, analytical, and billing processes. These manual processes tend to raise the cost of testing and extend the turnaround time. Many patients who go for COVID-19 testing want to know their test results early.
Here are some of the advantages of developing lab processes and web-based solutions that eliminate paper.
1. Reduction of Data Entry Errors
Using a web-based portal enables clinicians and patients to key in their test orders and demographic and insurance information into a LIS database. This portal also creates an order number and a barcoded label for the specimen. As soon as the sample gets to the laboratory, it will move to the testing lab promptly.
2. Faster Release of Test Results
Just as a web portal can assist clinicians in entering test results, doctors and patients can see their lab tests quickly. Patients can also receive notification by email when their lab results are ready. In cases where the lab directly connects to the provider’s EHR, the interface will transmit the test results immediately after the lab technicians enter them into the LIS.
3. Lower Costs
Paper processing incurs costs that can be cut off by automation. First paper processes delay data entry and invite errors. Unfortunately, these errors may not be detected early enough, and they can lead to more serious issues during other phases of testing. For instance, when vital demographic data is missing, payers may reject claims. Inaccurate demographics can also cause erroneous reporting to state health authorities.
Ultimately, manual processes are inefficient, and they hardly scale well in situations where labs are bombarded with thousands of specimens for coronavirus and influenza.
4. Scalable Test Processes
The high volume of testing for coronavirus has revealed various bottlenecks in clinical labs. The increased demands for flu, COVID-19, and other tests now show that labs must eliminate as many paper processes and manual steps as possible.
To scale up tests from a few hundred to thousands per day, labs must re-engineer their processes. In the pre-analytical phase, for instance, creating a web portal can eliminate many processing bottlenecks.
Patients or consumers can register for a test on the web portal and download a barcoded requisition to their phone. Then they can take the requisition to a specimen collection center. The specimen will get to the lab with a label that includes the patient’s name and barcode. After the test is complete, the patient may view their results through the web portal.
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If you need any lab management software or solution, call Lifepoint Informatics at 877.522.8378 or visit our contact page now to request a free consultation.