“UNDER 90”

by Harshita Vishwakarma
2 167 5.0/5

ABC Multispecialty Hospital, when commencing their Chemotherapy unit, developed certain processes in collaboration with the doctors and the Quality team. They agreed upon the Turnaround time of 90 minutes for Lab investigations of the patients undergoing chemotherapy, among other aspects. 

However, an aberration observed in the TAT of these investigations in recent times, not only upset the patients but also occasioned the delay in their treatment. On receiving feedback from the patients and the doctors, Dr Amit, the Medical Superintendent of ABC Hospital, called a meeting with all the stakeholders and higher management. Rishika, the Lab Manager, was asked to find the cause of the delay and get back in 2 days.

Rishika, after scrutiny of pre-analytical and analytical phase and study of all the incidences via Root Cause Analysis, pinned down the crux of the problem. Another meeting was called wherein she shared her conclusions. She underscored the inability to segregate the chemotherapy samples from other routine samples as the foremost reason for delay. Pondering upon these revelations, Dr Amit exclaimed, “Alas, we need to devise a parameter that can track and monitor these samples.”

Immediately, a separate committee inclusive of, Dr Rishi (HOD of Lab), Suman (Quality representative), Rishika, Shekhar (OPD Manager), Lizi (Nursing representative) headed by Dr Amit was formed to come up with a solution. The entire process was re-evaluated and re-engineered to deal with the delays in the present scenario. They designed a new sticker which would be a unique identifier for patients receiving chemotherapy.

Extensive training sessions were conducted to educate the front office staff, the lab staff, the nursing staff and all other stakeholders on the new processes and the use of sticker.

In case of out-patients, their prescription along with the bill of investigations borne this sticker which helped the phlebotomist and other lab technicians in their identification. While drawing their sample, they put this sticker on the vacutainers. This helped the technician running the sample in the machine to report the results on a priority basis.

With in-patients, the nursing staff put the sticker on the samples before sending them to the laboratory. 

The receptionist at the doctor’s chamber put the sticker followed by billing staff and lab staff. Lab manager tracked the entire process with the aid of lab technical in-charge, front office staff, and nursing staff.

The process, post-implementation, was continuously monitored. At the end of the month, results were studied which showed a significant decline in lab-related delays and most of the tests were reported well before 90 minutes.

Lessons Learned

  1. Service quality & delivery is each individual’s responsibility. It is an obligation rather than an avocation. Together, we can give customers the service we preach & promise.
  2. Change is constant & inevitable. Re-visiting the processes is imperative & it ensures they are modified and adjusted to justify the changes in footfall, clientele & customers’ expectations.
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30 June 2020 by Shefali Vagrecha
Very well presented .
01 July 2020 by Harshita Vishwakarma
Thank You.