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Clin Chim Acta. 1998 Feb 9;270(1):55-64.

Laboratory cost control and financial management software.

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Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Hadassah Medical Organization, Hebrew University-Hadassah Medical School, Jerusalem, Israel.


Economical constraints within the health care system advocate the introduction of tighter control of costs in clinical laboratories. Detailed cost information forms the basis for cost control and financial management. Based on the cost information, proper decisions regarding priorities, procedure choices, personnel policies and investments can be made. This presentation outlines some principles of cost analysis, describes common limitations of cost analysis, and exemplifies use of software to achieve optimized cost control. One commercially available cost analysis software, LabCost, is described in some detail. In addition to provision of cost information, LabCost also serves as a general management tool for resource handling, accounting, inventory management and billing. The application of LabCost in the selection process of a new high throughput analyzer for a large clinical chemistry service is taken as an example for decisions that can be assisted by cost evaluation. It is concluded that laboratory management that wisely utilizes cost analysis to support the decision-making process will undoubtedly have a clear advantage over those laboratories that fail to employ cost considerations to guide their actions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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