Category Archive: Health IT

Posted by Teresa Becker on

New Tech Allows PGx Labs

Pathagility’s LIMS and reporting solution provides lab executives with a central laboratory reporting solution that will adapt across any type of test, device or laboratory to provide the lab, referring physicians and patients with the enhanced reporting that innovative labs now require. With Pathagility, labs can fully customize their solution, as well as integrate with other lab technologies.

As pharmacogenetics (PGx) labs are becoming more advanced while the industry continues to rapidly evolve to keep up with new genomics discoveries, Pathagility’s solution is making investments into technology that help PGx labs to remain competitive.  

The Power of Annotating the Haplotype

Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs) hold the key in defining the risk of an individual’s susceptibility to various illnesses and response to drugs. At Pathagility, we’re taking the genetic level data after the lab has identified the SNP and we’re now able to annotate that to determine what the haplotype is from the genotype, rather than requiring the haplotype. Essentially, humans have 23 chromosome pairs, so this allows us to go through each pair and determine findings for each set of chromosomes.

Why Does it Matter to PGx Labs?

Previously, Pathagility’s LIMS solution was taking in just that final bit of information (the haplotype), and then concluding from that whether or not the tests indicate if the individual is a poor metabolizer of specific drug or has susceptibility to a certain illness. Now Pathagility’s solution allows the PGx labs to eliminate several steps which provides huge benefits to the labs. No longer do our customers have to use proprietary software or 3rd party software to get the haplotype information converted from the genotype.

These innovations allow our team to get closer to the data that these machines actually produce, so PGx labs no longer have to take the manual steps that used to be necessary.

What Are the Impacts to PGx Labs?

  • Time savings by eliminating the need to convert genotypes into haplotypes
  • Fewer resources needed, allowing staff to focus on other priorities
  • Decreased test turnaround times for referring physicians
  • Ease of use makes it easier for labs to get the data from the sequencing machine into the final relevant clinical output

For more information on how your lab can take advantage of superior reporting and LIMS software, check out these recent Pathagility resources:

3 Features in Pathagility Your Lab Will Love

How Your Lab Can Play a Vital Role in Improving the Patient Experience

To learn more about how Pathagility can help your lab can keep up with the changing technology landscape, request a 30-minute demo.

Posted by Teresa Becker on

AACC

This week marks the start of the 68th AACC Annual Scientific Meeting & Clinical Lab Expo taking place in beautiful Philly. With more than 750 exhibitors and over 200 sessions, laboratory executives from around the world will gain insight into the newest technology available to laboratories, will hear from industry thought leaders like 2016 AACC President Dr. Patricia Jones, and will have a chance to learn from peers across the healthcare continuum.

According to the AACC, attendees will benefit from “Sessions featuring world-renowned scientists to intimate brown bag sessions geared for lively discussion on hot topics, the 68th AACC Annual Scientific Meeting & Clinical Lab Expo offers something for everyone in laboratory medicine. More than 200 educational sessions in a variety of settings will give you the knowledge you need to advance professionally and develop adaptive solutions for today’s complex, challenging healthcare environment.”

4 AACC Sessions to Attend Covering Innovations in Lab Testing

Leading up to the meeting, we’d like to take this opportunity to preview of some of the changes and advancements happening in the world of laboratory testing that will be discussed at AACC this week. Whether your lab tests for toxicology, PGx, women’s health, cystic fibrosis, or genomics, these changes and innovations could impact the future of your lab.

During the AACC meeting, you’ll have opportunity to learn about the following by attending the sessions listed below (links provide further information on AACC’s website):

  • Evaluation of Time-of-Flight High Resolution Mass Spectrometry for Broad Spectrum Drug Screening in Urine

In the session, “Evaluation of Time-of-Flight High Resolution Mass Spectrometry for Broad Spectrum Drug Screening in Urine“, attendees will learn that, “Urine drug screening is among the most widely used procedures in clinical/toxicology laboratories today. Immunoassays have been the frontline method used for drug screening followed by confirmation through more specific methods such as liquid chromatography coupled to unit resolution tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). LC-MS/MS is limited by co-eluting compounds of similar structure; the fact that fragmentation does not always produce product ions; and difficulty performing non-targeted screening. Recently, high resolution mass spectrometry (HRMS) methods such as time of flight-mass spectrometry (TOF-MS) have been proposed as alternatives for non-targeted drug screening.”

  • Oral Fluid in the Clinical Toxicology Laboratory: Ready for Prime Time?

In the session, “Oral Fluid in the Clinical Toxicology Laboratory: Ready for Prime Time?”, attendees will learn that “Oral fluid is increasingly being studied as a convenient alternative to urine for clinical toxicology, particularly in physician office laboratories. Urine collection is often not observed, leading to the increased potential for sample adulteration; oral fluid collection does not share that drawback. The utility of oral fluid as a viable option to urinalysis has been published. Urine drug concentrations are not representative of specific dosing regimens, but oral fluid has shown promise in the area of drug level interpretation because of its relationship to blood. Further, point-of-care tests for oral fluid are also increasingly being introduced; their limitations and advantages will be presented.”

  • Laboratory Tests Related To Calcium and Bone Metabolism

In the session, “Laboratory Tests Related To Calcium and Bone Metabolism”, attendees will learn that, “In order to help clinicians with test selection and interpretation, laboratory scientists need to understand how PTH and 1,25 dihydroxyvitamin D regulate plasma calcium concentrations, and how changes in concentrations of PTH and 25-hydroxyvitamin D associate with various pathological conditions of parathyroid glands and kidneys. Furthermore, laboratorians need to be aware of the clinical utility of bone turnover markers in the treatment of osteoporosis in accordance with the recommendations from the National Osteoporosis Foundation.”

  • Precision Medicine Delivered by Advances in Circulating Cell-Free DNA Diagnostics

In the session, “Precision Medicine Delivered by Advances in Circulating Cell-Free DNA Diagnostics”, attendees will learn that, “Molecular and personalized genetic tests are expanding in the routine laboratory. Circulating nucleic acids, namely extra-cellular DNA or RNA molecules present in human circulation, serve as versatile biomarkers for achieving blood-based molecular diagnostics for the investigation of fetal health, cancers, other pathologies, and post-transplantation complications. Recently, there have been some exciting advances made in relation to circulating cell-free nucleic acid analysis, resulting in cutting-edge noninvasive applications for personalized diagnostics.”

Is Your LIMS Keeping Up?

Is your lab information technology keeping up with the changes that are happening each and every day in the healthcare and technology world? It’s imperative that your lab stop and evaluate your current capabilities to ensure your lab remains competitive.

A LIMS (Laboratory Information Management System) is a critical component to any lab operation, regardless of your lab’s focus. As a lab executive, you know that a LIMS allows you to effectively manage samples and associated data to improve lab efficiency, and by using a LIMS, your lab can automate workflows, integrate instruments, and manage samples and associated information – all important aspects of a laboratory’s continued success.

Has your lab evaluated your LIMS and reporting capabilities recently? If not, it might be time for a check up.

For more information on how your lab can gain complete control, check out these recent Pathagility resources:

Ebook: 5 Ways Lab Tech Will Change in the Next 5 Years

3 Ways Tox Labs Are Innovating

How Top PGx Labs Are Utilizing Tech – and How to Keep Up

To learn more about how Pathagility can help your lab establish best practices, request a 30-minute demo.

 

 

Posted by Teresa Becker on

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It’s impossible to read healthcare news or articles or event attend a health-focused event without hearing the words “patient-centered care” or “patient experience”. In today’s world, we are experiencing a massive shift in how healthcare has been previously delivered, and it’s reshaping almost every facet of the healthcare system from top to bottom.

Every patient has different values, preferences, and desired health outcomes based on their unique background and experiences. According to a recent article on HealthHub, “Patient-centered care involves transforming the relationship between providers and patients from the traditional model, in which a care provider prescribes the same treatment for most patients with similar diagnoses or conditions, into a patient-provider partnership that considers treatment options based on a patient’s unique concerns, preferences, and values.”

While many labs would believe they are removed from the patient experience, it’s simply not true. In fact, no matter which part of the healthcare system you belong, your work ultimately impacts the patient for better or for worse. In a recent Becker’s Healthcare article entitled, “10 Guiding Principles for Patient-Centered Care”, it states that:

All team members are considered caregivers. “Under this principle, everyone in the workforce, from housekeeping staff to the CEO, is part of patients’ care experience. Regardless of one’s role, each person is expected to put the patient first. To create a patient-centered culture, MSHA has patient-centered care training for new employees.”

Labs play a critical role in the patient experience as every test that’s run could dictate the patient’s future. The timing of the lab tests is important, the outcome of the tests is important, the delivery of the results is important, and the reporting that the referring physician receives is important.

3 Ways Your Lab Plays a Vital Role

No matter the size of your lab, the type of tests you run, or the number of staff you employ, if your lab provides assistance to one or many healthcare systems, then your lab plays a vital role in the patient experience. Below are 3 ways your lab can play the role of a positive difference maker in a patient’s healthcare journey:

  1. Ensure Everyone’s Voice is Heard

While you or your peers may oversee the entirety of lab operations and be responsible for quality and other measures, often times technicians and others working in the lab have firsthand insight into processes that can be optimized. In a lab where preciseness, quality, efficiency, volume, and timing all matter greatly, it’s important to find every area across lab operations that can be improved. And what better place to look for guidance than your employees?

Lab technicians, operations managers, and others in your lab may have valuable opinions and reasons to suggest new ways for your lab to do business. For example, perhaps one of your technicians notices that a step is being repeated and isn’t necessary. Or maybe the reports are created by your reporting solution, but aren’t delivered to the referring physician in the most timely manner. By allowing every lab employee to speak up and raise concerns or suggestions, you are empowering your lab staff, and thereby improving the end results for both referring physicians, as well as patients. And maybe even your lab’s own bottom line.

  1. Provide Intuitive & Actionable Information – Not Just Results

Your referring physicians see upwards of 10 patients a day – often times, even more than that. Because their time is in such demand, the more readable your reports and intuitive your data and results, the better your referring physicians will be able to help the patient. As a lab, you can create beautiful, easy to interpret reports by using a LIMS system like Pathagility that can help your lab determine the types of tests and reports you need and help determine the algorithms to process the interpretive reporting. Remember: the better the reports, the better the diagnosis or recommendation, and the more satisfied (and healthier!) the patient.

  1. Focus on Turnaround Times (TaTs) of Lab Tests

There’s nothing worse than getting lab work done and not hearing results back for days or weeks on end. What’s worse, when a patient calls their physician to find out the results, they are told they don’t have an answer and aren’t sure when they’ll hear. As a patient, you can relate to the frustration and fear that creates in the patient.

For your lab, you play an enormous part in improving this step in the patient experience, and ensuring all systems are integrated across your lab is a key element. As a lab executive, you need a central laboratory reporting solution (such as a LIMS) that will adapt across any type of test, device or laboratory. In addition, today’s advanced labs need a platform that can easily integrate with other existing systems such as EMRs, LIMS, billing systems, lab instruments, and middleware to ensure that all data is available in one single, secure location.

Labs should strive to ensure the patient remains the primary focus above all else, with the absolute goal of delivering premier care.

For more information on how your lab can gain complete control, check out these recent Pathagility resources:

Ebook: 5 Ways Lab Tech Will Change in the Next 5 Years

3 Ways Tox Labs Are Innovating

How Top PGx Labs Are Utilizing Tech – and How to Keep Up

To learn more about how Pathagility can help your lab establish best practices, request a 30-minute demo.

Posted by Teresa Becker on

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According to TechTarget’s definition, a “laboratory information system (LIS) is computer software that processes, stores and manages data from all stages of medical processes and tests.” While the definition may sound generic, LIS systems are critical to today’s laboratories as they are essentially the nucleus of all data, tests, procedures, and processes within the laboratory. Without an LIS that’s properly integrated across all other lab systems, information is siloed and processes are uncontrolled. 

Labs, like all other kinds of businesses, have to maintain a competitive edge in order to keep up with the evolving world of healthcare. If a lab doesn’t provide referring physicians or end patients with accurate and timely information, then they risk losing business to others in the market.

According to a recent article appearing on Digital Journal, “The demand for laboratory management systems has been rising rapidly across the world. The increased need for the improvement in laboratory competence and escalating demand for integrated healthcare information systems are driving the global laboratory information systems market significantly.”

In fact, according to the article, the Laboratory Information System Market stands to reach over $2 Billion by 2019 in the United States alone. That’s a whopping number, and a 7.70% increase during the period from 2013 and 2019, according to research conducted by Transparency Market Research (TMR).

Why is the LIS Market Growing so Rapidly?

Why is the LIS market growing so rapidly here in the United States – more so than it has in the past? In addition to the requirement for labs to remain competitive, there have been a growing number of life threatening diseases sweeping the nation, not to mention a growing number of individuals experiencing allergies and sicknesses. These sicknesses, diseases, and even genetic patterns make it incredibly important for labs to operate efficiently, and to identify trends and patterns, often times even before sickness or disease occurs.

In addition, the healthcare industry as a whole is becoming more and more mature with technology used at every turn with the goal of cutting costs, improving the patient experience, and reducing errors across the entire system. Traditionally, labs have lagged behind other functions in healthcare in their use of advanced technology, but the industry is realizing that labs are becoming more and more of an integral part of the entire healthcare process – and therefore, they need to become more innovative.

What Should Labs Looks for in an LIS?

Choosing an LIS or LIMS system can be a difficult task as there are many components to consider, from cost to flexibility to integrations and beyond. While the process can be overwhelming, our team at Pathagility has identified a few characteristics that are essential for long term success:

  1. Create a Central Data Environment

Your lab needs a central laboratory reporting solution that will adapt across any type of test, device or laboratory to provide your lab, referring physicians and patients with the enhanced reporting that innovative labs now require. In addition, today’s advanced labs need a platform that can easily integrate with other existing systems including EMRs, LIMS, billing systems, lab instruments, and middleware to ensure that all data is available in one single, secure location.

When all lab data is stored in a central environment, it allows lab staff to act quickly and with supreme accuracy when creating reports or compiling data for referring physicians or groups. With fewer interruptions, lab staff can stay focused on the important tasks before them. Platforms like Pathagility can provide complete visibility and improve efficiency by helping to manage workflows through a simple and easy-to-use interface.

  1. Reduce Costs & Improve Reporting

Advanced laboratories need the ability to adapt to changing technology and provide interpretive reporting across existing and emerging tests. Platforms like Pathagility, which can serve as a lab’s LIMS or Interpretive Reporting Software – or both, can dramatically increase the output while simplifying reporting. Out of the box, Pathagility provides “Case Types” for Toxicology, Pharmacogenetic (PGx), Anatomic Pathology (AP), Cystic Fibrosis, Wellness, Infectious Disease and other types of Molecular Diagnostic (MDx) testing.

  1. Improve Efficiency With Cloud Technology

Innovative labs are committed to leveraging new technology to help their teams work smarter, faster, and communicate better – both for the benefit of the lab, as well as the patient experience. These labs need complete visibility and improved communication across their workflows and processes.

If your lab is currently using multiple systems independently, consider consolidating or integrating technologies to allow for greater efficiency and communication across all lab technology. Platforms like Pathagility can be set-up as a stand-alone or to work in conjunction with existing systems to make all data visible in one location.


For more information on what characteristics your lab should consider when selecting an LIS or LIMS partner, check out these recent Pathagility resources:

The Evolution of the Lab

3 Ways Tox Labs Are Innovating

How Top PGx Labs Are Utilizing Tech – and How to Keep Up

To learn more about how Pathagility can help your lab establish best practices, request a 30-minute demo.

Posted by Teresa Becker on

Greg Ingle’s background is eclectic to say the least. Greg was a host in the 90’s for various radio stations and was a nightclub DJ in Asia until getting into his first consulting job with an Oracle shop. Since then he has primarily worked in information and technology in a myriad of roles. Greg transitioned into healthcare in 2010 when the EMR market began to really take off. The medical software company he worked for at the time bought out an existing EMR that had rudimentary clinical decision support built in and he was hooked. He wanted to build more intelligent toolsets that helped doctors diagnose effectively. He went on a hunt for likeminded folks and through that venture bought into the lab consulting firm. Greg has since scaled it and used the capital from a partner buyout to finish the CDS.

About Clinical Lab Consulting

Clinical Lab Consulting (CLC) is a lab consulting firm that offers a unique suite of services.  Greg always says that the company does “Science and Compliance” but they also do quite a bit more.  They cover many of the grey areas when the regulations haven’t quite kept up with the science, especially on the molecular side. They do turn key laboratory setups of all sizes and help train lab accreditation firms on new technology. The CLC team is a blend of pathologists, PHDs, Med Techs, Marketing and IT, giving the team well rounded expertise.

CLC’s Consulting Services

Greg commented that, “it would be easier to list what we don’t do!” According to him, if it happens in a lab, they can help. They primarily staff lab directors, perform inspections and help oversee validations of Laboratory Developed Tests. They also work with their clients to help with marketing and other business related topics.

When asked what types of labs they work with, again Greg joked (but in all seriousness), “Every type!” Physician Office Labs, Reference labs, Research Labs, Academia, and Hospitals. The CLC team specializes in helping take research assays into the clinical market.

CLC’s Focus Areas & Topics

Many labs struggle with CLIA regulations, Greg explained. Labs are in a highly regulated industry. Greg and his team get asked to help with all the major components to starting a lab, including, but not limited to: financial feasibility, business structure, CLIA and accreditation paperwork, assay development, compliance, oversight and billing/reimbursement.

Greg’s Advice for Today’s Labs

“Get out of your comfort zone and embrace new technologies,” said Greg. “Labs compete on service, which should extend to your software suite and process automation.”

Greg went on to explain that, “In order to stay competitive, every lab needs great reports, patient resources and portals along with fast turn around time to be competitive. Robotics and automation should be utilized to their full capacity to reduce margin of error and control costs.”

LIMS: Emerging Tech Labs Need to Watch

When asked about emerging technology that labs should watch, Greg commented that the entire lab industry is moving towards Molecular and preventative medicine. “I am a software guy at heart, so for me a modern LIMS (like Pathagility) that can natively interpret molecular data are becoming invaluable,” said Greg. “An integrated CDS system that gives real time feedback to the doctors from the lab with historical data trends will be the next wave of the future. Static reporting needs to die off and the doctors and labs should have meaningful dialogue via software.”

Learn more about Clinical Lab Consulting at: www.clinicallabconsulting.com.


For more information on how your lab can take advantage of superior reporting and LIMS software, check out these recent Pathagility resources:

3 Features in Pathagility Your Lab Will Love

How Your Lab Can Play a Vital Role in Improving the Patient Experience

To learn more about how Pathagility can help your lab can keep up with the changing technology landscape, request a 30-minute demo.

About Greg Ingle

Mr. Greg Ingle brings over 15 years of Information Technology and Healthcare experience to CLC, ranging from project management and product development to sales, marketing, and executive functions. Mr. Ingle has worked on complex database projects for the Unites States Department of Defense, US Customs, and Fortune 500 clients such as Dow Agro Science and Eli Lilly. Mr. Ingle turned his site to healthcare in 2011 and was at the forefront of the private practice EMR revolution, where he helped develop and implement several EMR platforms. Mr. Ingle was instrumental in taking his previous company, Kareo to the Forbes List as one of “America’s Most Promising Companies” in 2012 and 2013. As the Chief Executive Officer of Clinical Laboratory Consulting, LLC™, he oversees a staff of 70 consulting Pathologists, PhD’s, and Medical Technologists. Mr. Ingle serves on several advisory boards for laboratory best practices and is the Chief Operations Officer of Clinical Decision Support Software provider Medical Database, LLC.

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Posted by Teresa Becker on

lab-test

Medical laboratory managers and technicians play an important role in the prevention and diagnosis of diseases of all kinds. These lab techs are irreplaceable in the lab as they set up and sanitize laboratories, prepare specimens, match blood compatibility for transfusions, analyze fluid chemical content, collect blood samples, examine immune system elements and so much more. Lab techs and lab staff are expected to handle sophisticated laboratory equipment, including lab reporting technology, cell counters, microscopes and even automated analyzers. Needless to say, the roles that lab staff play are incredibly important, and no matter how much technology advances, there are still many aspects of laboratories that must be human-operated.

How Can Labs Bridge the People & Processes Gap?

While lab managers and techs do everything they are responsible for (and much more) to run labs efficiently, lab technology is an X factor for labs that want to build processes that last – and can scale. Labs need to deliver reports and lab tests electronically, reliably, and efficiently to referring physicians, all in a timely and affordable manner. Delivering in a competitive market is essential – especially when the patient’s well being is at stake.

In addition, labs need to gain the agility and control to deliver critical information on their terms and time schedule, connecting any device, software, and people – whether physicians, lab staff, or patient – with no barriers. Advanced labs are running their business in the cloud, with platforms that integrate across all technologies.

Why Integration of Lab Tech is Crucial

Today’s advanced labs need a platform that can easily integrate with their existing systems and interpret data from existing EMRs, LIMS, billing systems, lab instrumentation, and middleware systems; while affording them flexibility to report through multiple channels.

Integration of all lab systems makes it possible for lab staff to better manage testing, reporting, and transferring of information through the secure use and sharing of health information. Integrating lab systems can improve the quality of results, even as it makes the lab processes more cost effective.

By integrating your lab technologies – from LIMS to billing to lab instrumentation – lab teams will gain:

  • Accurate and complete information about a patient’s health. That way, providers can give the best possible care, whether during a routine visit or a medical emergency.
  • The ability to better direct the care to be given. This is especially important if a patient has a serious medical condition.
  • A way to securely share information with physicians, groups, or patients. This means patients and their families can more fully take part in decisions about their health.
  • Information to help diagnose health problems sooner, reduce medical errors, and provide safer care at lower costs.

For more information on how your lab staff can take advantage of superior reporting and LIMS software, check out these recent Pathagility resources:

How Your Lab Can Play a Vital Role in Improving the Patient Experience

3 Features in Pathagility Your Lab Will Love

5 Ways Lab Technology Will Change in the Next 5 Years

To learn more about how Pathagility can help your lab can keep up with the changing technology landscape, request a 30-minute demo.

Posted by Brandon Willis on

Scientific microscope.

Evaluating a LIMS and reporting solution can be overwhelming. Not only does your lab’s reporting affect the quality of your own lab and processes, but your reports affect the end patient experience, too. While there are many questions you should ask in order to find the right solution and the right team to partner with, we’ve put together 4 top questions you should ask when evaluating a lab reporting solution:

  1. Can I craft a report that plays to my expertise and insights?

When the specialist at the clinic gets your report, are they going to say, “I know this report. I’ve seen it many times before.”? That kind of uniformity, while sometimes comfortable, doesn’t allow your lab to express your unique value on your reports. Your additional data and perspectives are a huge differentiator for your lab. When evaluating a lab reporting solution, it’s important to ask if that solution can accommodate your unique needs, or if you’ll be forced into a one-size-fits-all report.

A critical component of offering a uniquely valuable report is the ability to process the data relayed to the report in ways that express your lab’s expertise. Is there only one way, in your reporting solution, to interpret the data ingested by it? Can you to define and redefine the algorithm that interprets the data relayed to the report? If there is only one algorithm to interpret the data, who defined it and why? Can you move at the speed of research – or not – at your comfort level?

Further, even with a uniquely designed report and expertly customized algorithm generating data for your report, you need to ask if your subject matter experts (SMEs) can apply their insights on a case-by-case basis during the generation of any given report? And If so… How are these expert insights relayed to the report?

If you’re limited to a one-size-fits-all report, a one-way-to-do-it algorithm or a canned-responses-only report generation mechanism… In the least you may not be able to express critically differentiating components of your lab and its expertise. But in the worst of situations you may have to hold cases because they do not pass muster with your experts.

  1. How does my report get delivered?

When evaluating a reporting solution, you need to consider whether your reports will be bound up inside of the system, or whether the solution will make your reports readily available across multiple reporting channels. For example if your client – the clinician – wants to access their reports online, can they do that? Can they receive email updates that reports are ready? If a clinic still relies on faxes, can they receive the reports that way? Or, without going through a complex IT hurdle, will you be able to provide electronic copies directly out to clinics?

The core of this question is delivery – making your reports available across multiple channels so your clients get your reports as quickly and as easily as possible.

  1. What happens when I want to expand the platform of tests I offer?

What if you only do toxicology, PGx or women’s health at the moment, but you want to expand your testing capabilities? If you move onto a reporting system that only does ONE kind of reporting, then you need to go back to the drawing board and purchase a new solution when you decide to expand your business.

Your lab needs a reporting system that can flex around new offerings and translate those new offerings into familiar workflows that ease on-boarding and accelerate adoption.

  1. Is there an API?

As your business grows, you’ll find you have more IT needs and have multiple systems – sometimes performing multiple tasks simultaneously. Your reporting solution should be a facilitator of data movement, not a hinder it. Your reporting solution should not silo off important data from other systems that run important factors across the lab (e.g business critical systems that you may already have in place or could adopt in the future). It’s important that your solution has a full API (application program interface) that can be extended around both existing and new offerings.

Critical lab systems need to be able to access and retrieve the important data (i.e. finished clinician reports, case data, demographic data, business data, user data, etc) they need to get the job done.


For more information on how your lab can take advantage of superior reporting and LIMS software, check out these recent Pathagility resources:

3 Features in Pathagility Your Lab Will Love

How Your Lab Can Play a Vital Role in Improving the Patient Experience

To learn more about how Pathagility can help your lab can keep up with the changing technology landscape, request a 30-minute demo.

About the Author

Brandon Willis is VP of Development at Pathagility. For more information, http://www.pathagility.com/about/. 

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Posted by Teresa Becker on

2016 Lab Resolutions

If the past few years have been any indicator, healthcare in 2016 (and maybe especially in the lab) will be fraught with change and will present many opportunities for those innovating in the face of those changes.

“As laboratory professionals, our focus on quality begins by looking inward at our operational processes from specimen collection to result reporting, but the application of this work is then externalized, sent to the ordering physicians and applied to their patients,” said Irwin Rothenberg MBA, MS, MT(ASCP) in a recent post. “The way we perform and report our work, and its effect on patient care, ultimately affects the greater community. This we already know, and it is one of our strongest motivators to maintain the best quality possible. But what we may not see as clearly is how changes in the world around us are constantly impacting our own work environment, challenging established routines and time tested views of our profession.”

As Irwin emphasized in his post, changes in healthcare are all around us and are simply unavoidable – especially for lab professionals. So how can your lab keep up with the changing environment while ensuring your referring physicians and the end patient remain at the center? We’ve come up with 3 Resolutions for 2016 along with advice you can implement now to help meet your goals:

Resolution 1: “I resolve to create a central environment for my data”

As a lab executive, you need a central laboratory reporting solution (LIMS) that will adapt across any type of test, device or laboratory to provide your lab, referring physicians and patients with the enhanced reporting that innovative labs now require. In addition, today’s advanced labs need a platform that can easily integrate with other existing systems such as EMRs, LIMS, billing systems, lab instruments, and middleware to ensure that all data is available in one single, secure location.

When all lab data is stored in a central environment, it allows lab staff to act quickly and with supreme accuracy when creating reports or compiling data for referring physicians or groups. With fewer interruptions, lab staff can stay focused on the important tasks before them. Platforms like Pathagility can provide complete visibility and improve efficiency by helping to manage workflows through a simple and easy-to-use interface.

Resolution 2: “I resolve to institute low cost ways to improve reporting for our referring physicians and groups”

While there are many low cost ways to improve output for physicians and increase the value your lab can provide, one way you can immediately impact value to physicians is to streamline reporting and increase the number of tests and case types that your reporting software can handle.

Advanced laboratories need the ability to adapt to changing technology and provide interpretive reporting across existing and emerging tests. Platforms like Pathagility, which can serve as a lab’s LIMS or Interpretive Reporting Software – or both, can dramatically increase the output while simplifying reporting. Out of the box, Pathagility provides “Case Types” for Toxicology, Pharmacogenetic (PGx), Anatomic Pathology (AP), Cystic Fibrosis, Wellness, Infectious Disease and other types of Molecular Diagnostic (MDx) testing.

Use Case:

For one Pathagility customer, the lab’s former in-house system was only able to analyze 50 tests across toxicology and PGx. With Pathagility, the lab is now able to analyze over 95 different tests - with the ability to analyze even more as the lab continues to expand testing.

The team is now able to format reports by any number of factors, including case types. Previously providing two separate reports to referring physicians and groups, Pathagility now allows the lab to create just one easy to interpret visual report. In addition, the team can now work alongside marketing to rapidly integrate unique logos and color for each group it serves for branding purposes.

Resolution 3: “I resolve to understand how a strong cloud-based technology can increase efficiency”

Innovative labs are committed to leveraging new technology to help their teams work smarter, faster, and communicate better – both for the benefit of the lab, as well as the patient experience. These labs need complete visibility and improved communication across their workflows and processes.

If your lab is currently using multiple systems independently, consider consolidating or integrating technologies to allow for greater efficiency and communication across all lab technology. Platforms like Pathagility can be set-up as a stand-alone LIMS or work in conjunction with existing systems to make all data visible in one location.


“While change brings up thoughts of new tests, new instruments, new procedures, and more training, it can also require conceptual reorientation of what we are achieving,” said Rothenberg.

But in 2016, our labs should strive to ensure that even with the great technological advances the healthcare landscape is seeing, that the physician and patient remain our primary focus with the goal of delivering premier care.

For more information on how your lab can gain complete control, check out this recent Pathagility resource:

The Evolution of the Lab

To learn more about how Pathagility can help your lab establish best practices, request a 30-minute demo.

Posted by kyle on

We received a call from one of our lab customers requesting a results only interface for one of their referring physicians.  The referring physician has sent only a small volume of cases to the lab, and the cost from the EMR vendor alone would make the cost of an interface unjustifiable.  The referring physician group was under the impression that an interface was required by the new healthcare mandates.  The buzz around federal reimbursement dollars for medical practices under the ARRA (The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009) has created some confusion.   Keep in mind, that a full results only EMR interface is not the only option to satisfy the electronic results requirement.  Parsing fact from fiction is not easily done, and physicians are not always getting honest answers from vendors.  That’s not to say that there isn’t good information available and being communicated, but many times in trying to close a sale, vendors may be muddying the waters.  On more than one occasion, it has been left to us to educate not only our lab partners, but their referring physician groups on what an interface does, is, and what the costs are.  If you are a referring physician, an interface (results only or results and orders interface) from the lab may be what is required, often times all that is needed is to receive results and satisfy the electronic results requirement. We provide EMR interfaces for our customers and are certainly not opposed to them.  We just want to make that our customers know all the facts and we deliver exactly what they need.   In the case described above Pathagility’s ReportPath product fit the bill and was just what the doctor ordered.

Ask questions from your vendor, make sure you are not just getting upsold, and that you are getting exactly what you want and need for your practice.  Avoid being shoe-horned into what works for someone else.  At Pathagility we focus on offering products like ReportPath that work alongside and seamlessly with other systems, and strive to deliver and  communicate with our partners before, during, and throughout our relationship.

Posted by mark on

In a couple of weeks, Pathagility is going to attend the USCAP 2011 Annual Meeting in San Antonio, TX.  Are you? 

Whether you are associated with a pathology organization or you are a vendor, we would enjoy the opportunity of meeting you there.  You can send us an email to info@pathagility.com or send us a DM on Twitter at www.twitter.com/pathagility.

We would also enjoy hearing what you are most looking forward to at the meeting.  One of the speakers?  Seeing and hearing more about one of the new technologies related to this industry? Or just hanging out in San Antonio for a few days?  We would enjoy your comments…