Ensuring faster patient treatment by reducing turn-around-time for laboratory results

Carsten Thomsen1,*, Claus Brasen2, Christian Ulrik Maegaard3, Nina Mogensen1, Ivan Brandslund1

1Clinical Immunology and Biochemestry, Lillebaelt Hospital, Vejle, 2Clinical Immunology and Biochemestry, Lillebaelt Hospital, Kolding, 3Facilities Management, Odense University Hospital, Odense, Denmark

Introduction: Reliable analytical results are the key products from a laboratory.

However, fast results and short turn-around-time (STAT) are becoming increasingly important for a cost-effective handling of hospitalized patients. We have invented and constructed a cheap tube transport system for sending blood samples from clinical wards to the laboratory through a hose marginally thicker than an electrical wire and causing no changes to biochemical components in the blood (ref. 1).


Stability of biochemical components in blood samples transported by the Tempus 600 system. Klinisk Biokemi I Norden 2013, 1, 38-46.(www.nfkk.org)

Objectives: To evaluate effect of installing the Tempus 600 system (www.tempus600.com) on turn-around-time in an emergency admission unit.

Methods: Using the LIMS system, BCC from CGI (Denmark) we monitored duration of involved processes in minutes (time from electronic request to blood sampling to tube arrival to analytical result to result available at the ward in the electronic patient record system).

Results: Percentage of samples received  10 min after sampling      before 11%              after 45%

Percentage of analyzed samples 45 min after sampling       before 34%              after 72%

Time (minute) from sampling to 95% of results reportable      before 127 min.      after 76 min.

Conclusion: The dedicated one-way blood tube transport system enables reception of patient samples in the laboratory within 10 minutes from even remote acute admission areas and reporting of results for 95% of components within 45 minutes, depending on degree of automation in the laboratory.

It is expected that the effect will be a shorter hospital stay for acute admitted patients, a larger patient per bed turnover, an increase in amount of hospitalized patients becoming outdoor patients and a decrease in cost per patient treated, when installed hospital-wide in all wards.

A new type of blood tube for arterial blood gas is being constructed enabling dispatch of arterial samples

Keywords: Laboratory organization