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Laboratory Services

Advanced Technology Laboratory, General Information, Main lab

Update: COVID-19 Swab Supplies

If you are collecting COVID-19 swabs in your office or clinic, please order and collect using the saline swab kits (“liquid media” or “wet collection”) instead of the tube with no liquid media (“dry collection”).

• Liquid media swab kits will provide a faster turn-around time.

• Dry collection kits supplies are low.

Please refer to the COVID-19 PCR test in the Lab Catalog for the most up-to-date information on COVID-19 collection.

COVID-19 PCR Swab – LAB1230607

Laboratory supplies are filled 8 am to 5 pm, Monday through Friday. Requests made during off hours will be held until the next available day. The Laboratory Supply Department is closed on weekends and holidays. Supplies may take up to 5 days to deliver, so please place orders in advance. We cannot guarantee STAT delivery.

Compliance & Safety, General Information

Inform: Interoperability and Information Blocking

The 21st Century Cures Act and Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) Final Rule states that Spectrum Health cannot engage in practices that interfere with access, exchange, or use of electronic health information (EHI), otherwise known as Information Blocking, unless a specific Information Blocking exception applies.

Effective April 5, 2021, patients can request a specific subset of their health information (known as the USCDI data set) which can include progress notes, lab results, and discharge summary notes in near real-time.

• MyChart: Health information will be pushed faster to patients via MyChart.  Patients may be able to see results in MyChart prior to the provider seeing the results.

• Majority of resulted tests will be released to MyChart twice a day without regard to holidays and weekends.  A small number of results will be blocked or held over the weekend including all of radiology and some pathology, genetics, and cardiovascular results.

• Third-Party Applications: Provided a third-party application is configured correctly for Spectrum Health’s application programming interface (API) feed, patients will be able to request that their health information be shared directly with the third-party application of their choosing.

This change will promote interoperability and allow data to flow freely and securely between providers, payers, and patients.

If you have additional questions, feel free to reach out to Information Governance on Spectrum Health’s InSite or by emailing informationgovernance@spectrumhealth.org.

 

General Information

eSHare Downtime Notice

UPDATE: 3/29/2021 9 am – Upgrade completed at 2 am, queued results are going outbound and acknowledgements are being returned successfully by external systems. If you have any issues or concerns, please use the contact us link above or call the Spectrum Health Helpdesk at 616-391-4357, Option 3 and reference the Change request number: CHG0056123

Beginning Sunday, March 28th at 22:00 (10 pm), eSHare, the system that handles interfaced laboratory orders and results between various practice EMRs (Electronic Medical Record) and the Spectrum Health West Michigan Epic system, will be down to upgrade the software to a newer version. During this downtime, orders and results will not pass from eSHare to Epic or vice versa. These will queue up and release once the upgrade is completed. The downtime is expected to end on March 29th at 02:00 (2 am).

This does not affect Epic (“Hyperspace”), EpicCare Link (“Link”), or Epic Community Connect (formerly Epic Affiliate Program).

If you have questions or concerns, please use the Contact Us link above.

Compliance & Safety, Education & Training, General Information

Appropriate Specimen Labeling

Spectrum Health Regional Laboratory is committed to the safety of our patients, and the accuracy and quality of the testing we provide.  In order to do that, we need your help to ensure that patient specimens adhere to our internal policies and quality checks.

THE DETAILS

To that end, we are asking for your help in the process of labeling specimens before they are sent to our laboratory.  It is our policy at Spectrum Health Regional Laboratory that the routine labeling of laboratory specimens MUST INCLUDE FULL LEGAL NAME and DATE OF BIRTH, and if possible, additional identifiers such as medical record number, specimen number, etc. If this information is missing, incomplete or incorrect, the specimen is considered a mislabeled specimen, and will be canceled upon receipt.  (The only exception to this is “precious specimens,” ex. cerebrospinal fluid or surgical specimens, which can sometimes be given an opportunity for relabeling after correct identification).

If a patient specimen is labeled with a NICKNAME instead of the FULL LEGAL NAME, this specimen would be considered a mislabeled specimen and have to follow the above process, which will delay patient care and/or employee eligibility to work.

EXAMPLES

“Alli” Smith Unacceptable  Allison Lynn Smith Acceptable
“Johnny” D Parker Unacceptable John David Parker Acceptable
“Dan” Stevens Unacceptable Daniel Stevens III Acceptable

WHAT WE NEED YOU TO DO

Please review this notice with your collecting/labeling staff as soon as possible to ensure proper labeling practices.  Though not new, this policy has been reviewed by our team members in central specimen processing, and will be strictly adhered to going forward.  Please feel free to forward this notice to anyone involved in the collecting or labeling of laboratory specimens that are sent to Spectrum Health.

Thank you for continuing to trust Spectrum Health Regional Laboratory for your testing needs, and thank you for partnership in attention and commitment to quality and safety!

For questions or concerns regarding this policy, please use the “Contact Us” link above.

RESOURCES

Spectrum Health Labeling Guide

The Joint Commission 2021 Patient Safety Goals

Clinical Laboratory Standards Institute

Spectrum Health Laboratory Policy #9955

Compliance & Safety, Education & Training, General Information

Self-Swab for STI Testing

Self-collected vaginal swabs may be used for STI testing as opposed to provider-collected swabs. Self-collected swabs are supported by current clinical guidelines as recent studies have shown their equivalence, if not superiority, in quality and their association with increased patient satisfaction.

NOTE: Self-collection must still take place in a healthcare setting and is not approved for at-home collection.

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General Information, Hemostasis/Coagulation

Update: Platelet Aggregation Studies

The Spectrum Health Regional Laboratory Coagulation Department will be going live with the Helena AggRam analyzer on February 3, 2021.  This analyzer uses platelet rich plasma to analyze human platelet aggregation which is measured by absorbance.  The following aggregating agents are used in these studies: Arachidonic Acid, ADP, Collagen, Epinephrine, and Ristocetin.

Patients for platelet aggregation studies should be resting, fasting, and non-smoking. Patients should avoid taking any prescription or over the counter medications known to affect platelet function for ten (10) days to two (2) weeks prior to the studies. For a list of medications known to have anti-platelet effects, click here. Continue Reading