Lab Quality Confab and the Pursuit of “Best in Class”
On Tuesday, U.S. Healthtek’s President and CEO Cristy Reiter heads to Atlanta to participate in the Lab Quality Confab Process Improvement Institute event, which starts today and goes through Thursday. In its 12th year, this is our first time participating in it – in fact, U.S. HealthTek is a sponsor of the event. Its mission is our mission: to boost quality, cut costs, and add value for those who work in and manage medical labs. There are dozens of sessions tackling topics such as lab design, workflow processes, and useful tools and informatics.
The lineup of topics and speakers is stellar (which is no surprise as Robert Michel of the Dark Report is involved). On Wednesday the 10th, the Master Session is “Patient Safety, Error Reduction, and Quality Improvement: Successes and Lessons Learned from 10 Years of Lean, Process Redesign, and Hospital-wide Staff Engagement.” Dr. Milenko Tanasijevic, of Harvard Medical School, takes on this heady topic — an issue we know well here at U.S. Healthtek.
At that session – and many others – you’ll hear the phrase “best in class.” What does that mean exactly? The official definition from the Business Dictionary is “the highest current performance level in an industry, used as a standard or benchmark to be equaled or exceeded.” Fair enough. That definition certainly justifies its current buzz-term worthiness and is seemingly weightier than the standard desire for “best practices.”
But I maintain that in this industry, it’s important to understand that the “class” is in constant motion. It’s a shape-shifting collection of ever-improving data and advancing technology fueled by the evolving needs of patients. So I’m only slightly exaggerating when one finishes a session on “best in class” procedures, that “class” has “graduated” and moved on by the time you’ve had that next cup of coffee! To put it another way, the goal of “highest current performance” is in fact a journey, not a destination.
And that’s exactly what makes this business exciting to us.
Another point I’ve learned in working with the diverse group of clients U.S. HealthTek has is that what is best in class for one lab isn’t for another. At the end of the day, it’s always going to be about constructing a custom set of procedures using adaptable technology, because every lab and client is unique – in a class of its own, if you will.
At the end of the day, it’s always going to be about constructing a custom set of procedures using adaptable technology, because every lab and client is unique – in a class of its own, if you will.
This makes gatherings like this and their topical workshops even more critical for those who do the important work in our medical labs. Specifically for us, it offers up the opportunity to network with lab management and quality assurance people. We’ve been getting more interest in our Supply Ordering Application and CRM software, and we’ll be looking for feedback on those areas and no doubt having interesting conversations on those topics.
Related, you may have noticed that you’re seeing U.S. HealthTek get out and be part of more of these professional events. We understand that the more we get out into our public square, the more we meet face-to-face with those working around us, and the better we are at achieving and exceeding that benchmark of quality for our present and future clients. If you’re going, make sure you say hi to Cristy; if not, we’ll no doubt come away with perspectives that make their way into a future article.