Morning rounds inpatient test availability

Novis DA, Dale JC. Morning rounds inpatient test availability: A College of American Pathologists Q- Probes study of 79 860 morning CBC and electrolyte test results in 367 institutions. Arch Pathol Lab Med.2000; 124:499-503. (abstract: Yearbook of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine 2002, 374-375)

OBJECTIVES: To determine the success with which laboratories were able to report morning test results on time, the laboratory practice characteristics associated with improved success, and the degree of satisfaction among clinicians with the timeliness of laboratory service.

DESIGN: Hospital laboratories participating in the College of American Pathologist Q-Probes laboratory quality improvement program prospectively calculated the percentages of morning-run complete blood cell count (CBC) and electrolyte results that were reported on or before predetermined reporting deadlines, completed questionnaires concerning their departments’ practice characteristics as they related to performing morning blood work, and distributed to physician utilizers of morning laboratory services questionnaires evaluating physician satisfaction with laboratory services.

SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: A total of 367 public and private institutions located in the United States (355), Canada (5), Australia (2), and 1 each in the United Kingdom, Spain, Brazil, Korea, and Guam. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE: The percentages of morning-run CBC and electrolyte results reported on or before predetermined reporting deadlines.

RESULTS: Participants submitted data on 40 256 CBC and 39 604 electrolyte specimens. In aggregate, a total of 88.9% of these tests (90.2% of CBCs and 87.6% of electrolytes) were reported on or before the reporting deadlines that the participating laboratories set for themselves. Half of the participants reported 94.6% of their CBC results and 95.5% of their electrolyte results on or before their self-imposed reporting deadlines. No specific demographic features or departmental practice characteristics were associated with higher or lower rates of institutional reporting compliance. Most physician utilizers of early-morning laboratory test results believed that the laboratory is sensitive to and meets the needs of clinicians for timely reporting of early-morning test results.

CONCLUSIONS: Most laboratories are capable of reporting 95% of their routine morning laboratory tests on time, and most physicians are satisfied with their laboratories’ morning testing service.