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Clin Lab Manage Rev. 1996 Mar-Apr;10(2):124-33.

Utilization management in hospital clinical laboratories: a local analysis.


As hospital clinical laboratories position themselves for increasing involvement in managed care plans and for dealing with increasing cost containment, laboratory managers need to produce and assess data on the use of their testing services. The purpose of this study was to answer questions about the relationship between several dependent variables and the laboratory utilization management (UM) processes currently in place. An investigator-designed questionnaire was used to gather data on hospital bed size, availability of pathologists, involvement in managed care plans, and the types of laboratory information systems in use. The questionnaire was sent to the managers of all acute care hospital laboratories in the greater Houston metropolitan area. Although the total number of responses was small, the results showed that there is very little UM activity in Houston acute care hospital laboratories. This lack of sophisticated UM procedures may be consistent with the immature and evolving managed care environment in Houston.

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