American Association for Clinical Chemistry
Better health through laboratory medicine
April 2009 Clinical Laboratory News: Volume 35, Number 4

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COVER STORIES

cTn and MI—What’s the Diagnosis?
Chronic Elevations, Improving Analytic Performance Confound Interpretation
By Gina Rollins

 

Major guidelines have established cTn as the preferred biomarker for diagnosing MI, yet clinical and analytical challenges have impacted interpretation of the test. Helping clinicians understand the characteristics of cTn assays and the evidence for their use can advance the utility of this important biomarker.

The Health IT Revolution
Are Labs Ready to Adapt to EHRs? 

By Bill Malone

 

Besides aiming billions of dollars at jumpstarting the economy, the recent stimulus bill also set aside almost $20 billion to promote adoption of EHRs. As major contributors to individuals’ health records, labs need to be ready to provide data that conform to standards and vocabularies that may not be a part of their LIS.

SERIES ARTICLES

D-Dimer
A Non-invasive Triage for Patients with Suspected DVT
By Shiu-Ki Rocky Hui, MD, and Alan E. Mast, MD, PhD

 

If left untreated, deep venous thrombosis is a serious medical condition that can increase the risk for a fatal pulmonary embolism. Testing for plasma D-dimer provides a rapid, inexpensive, accurate, and simple method to detect DVT even in ambulatory care or emergency settings.

PATIENT SAFETY FOCUS

Disconnection from Patients and Care Providers
A Latent Error in Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
An Interview with Stephen Raab, MD conducted by Michael Astion, MD, PhD

 

Stephen Raab, MD, an expert in patient safety, discusses how the disconnection between lab workers and patients can lead to errors, and possible solutions that can increase lab performance

Latent Errors in Lab Services
The Lab’s Disconnect from Patients
By Michael Astion, MD, PhD

 

Latent errors—failures in organization or lab design—can have a major impact on lab quality and patient safety. Michael Astion, MD, PhD discusses some of the most common latent errors, and gives insight on how to prevent their occurrence.

The Role of Lab Directors in Patient Safety
An Interview with James Hernandez, MD conducted by Michael Astion, MD, PhD

 

In addition to ensuring that lab tests are performed to accepted standards, lab directors are responsible for preventing latent errors that can potentially cause lab failures. In this interview, James Hernandez, MD, an experienced lab manager, discusses the role of lab directors and the education and training required to run a successful lab.

NEWS BRIEF

U.S. Newborn Screening Nearly Universal

PROFILES

New Products

Regulatory Profiles

Industry Profiles

Diagnostic Profiles

News from the FDA


Next Month

BNP and HF: Clinical Implications and Controversies

The Buzz on Comparative Effectiveness