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Clin Lab Manage Rev. 1998 Jul-Aug;12(4):248-55.

Impact on human resources: Core Laboratory versus laboratory information system versus modular robotics.

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St. Mary's Hospital Center, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.


Technological advances in laboratory systems have had a great impact on human resources. Surviving the changes requires an in-depth understanding of the technology to implement the appropriate operational model. St. Mary's is a 414-bed, acute care hospital. For 18 months, the laboratories went through the process of moving from a noncomputerized traditional model laboratory (i.e., by discipline) to a fully computerized Core Lab. The Core Lab concept fully integrates biochemistry, hematology, blood bank, and microbiology into two sections (not physically separated): tests processed by automation and tests processed manually. This approach led to a 15% reduction in staff while the volume doubled. The transitions occurred sequentially: from traditional laboratory to Core Lab (noncomputerized), from manual Core Lab to fully computerized Core Lab, and ultimately from a simulation of manual preanalytical phase to automated preanalytical phase (modular robotics). The findings show that Core Lab and computerization have almost the same impact on human resources, 35% and 30% respectively, and modular robotics the least impact with 17%.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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