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Laboratory Outreach Services Report

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Updated: Apr 23rd, 2022

Hospitals benefit greatly from outreach programs. In fact, they record increased revenues as they seek to improve on efficiency and hence productivity. Moreover, these activities work to strengthen their relationship with patient communities, outsourcing companies as well as physicians. In addition, they are able to fill their unused capacities which maximize usage of hospital facilities. It is also quite important to note that such services help to improve economic value of hospitals by building rapport with companies, the community as well as physicians. These programs include laboratory outreach services and online diagnosis, among others. This is a new market venture which has created competition among hospitals. Therefore, in order to achieve success, modification of current processes and systems are necessary. Moreover, these areas need to be developed for hospitals to achieve their full potential. In essence, the areas that require development include billing, logistics, client services, sales, physician connectivity, marketing and service centers, among others. In addition, hospitals need to expand on customer related services. This will enable them to reap the benefits of outreach services. This paper will endeavor to explore laboratory outreach services (Arup, 2007, p. 1).

Laboratory outreach services involve programs offered beyond hospital setting. In fact, they extend beyond the normal roles of hospital laboratories. Services such as processing of patient samples as well as generation of test results are extended to commercial markets. These include businesses, offices of physicians, and insurance companies, among others. In essence, these hospitals tend to compete with commercial reference laboratories that include Quest Diagnostics and LabCorp, among others. This came in as a relief to hospital administrators since it opens up opportunities for more revenues given the limited number of lab tests and processing acquired from inpatients and emergency cases. Several factors come into play before hospitals decide on laboratory outreach services. These include business, marketing as well as financial factors. For instance, they consider available spaces, time, facilities, down-turns, operation costs, possible volume of sample orders and turn around times. Others include the method of relaying result. However, it is also quite important to note that in-patients and emergency cases remains hospital’s priority. Therefore, these factors are usually considered extensively before deciding on laboratory outreach services (Engel, 2010, p. 1).

In considering these factors, hospitals must ensure that they have the right equipment as well as trained staff. There are sample orders which are usually carried out regularly. These include chemistry tests such as RBC (red blood cells) and urine, among others. Therefore in order to achieve down- time, the hospital must ensure that the right staff and equipment are available. Turn around time is also very essential to clients, hospitals that can process and relay results to their clients in the shortest period tend to gain competitive advantage. Moreover, care should be taken to ensure that results transmitted are accurate. Other factors that require consideration include among others, operational costs and sample volume. The former should be scrutinized to ensure that hospital objectives are met and quality services are provided. The latter is also important as it enables managers to decide on benefits of laboratory outreach programs (Engel, 2010, p. 1).

Laboratory outreach services are very essential to hospitals as to draws several benefits. However, it requires extensive training and heavy investments. It is therefore quite necessary that managers assess their financial status before deciding on the service. Most hospitals that have ventured in this market have benefited from its social and economic value. These include, among other strengthening their relationship with the community, clients as well outsourcing companies. However, it is quite important to note that these benefits cannot be achieved without proper management and execution of laboratory outreach programs. Therefore, managers have the responsibility of providing proper management of such programs (Arup, 2007, p. 1).

References

Arup, A.V. (2007). Hospital laboratory outreach: benefits and planning. National Center for Biotechnology Information. Web.

Engel, R. (2010). The 411 on Hospital Laboratory Outreach: Hospital Laboratory Outreach Programs. roxanneengelphd.com. Web.

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