At a recent conference I attended, Christine Sinsky, MD, Vice President of Professional Satisfaction at the American Medical Association, presented data on various time savers that physician practices have tested to streamline clinical processes.
One example she described was pre-visit lab testing. She asserted that the strategy saves time and money. It sounded intriguing. I’ve seen how cluttered processes and time-consuming workarounds can really make you frazzled and sap the joy out of patient care.
As I listened to her presentation, I found myself wondering, “How does it actually work? Does it involve additional needle sticks? How do they get labs done fast enough for the results to be ready at exam time? Do they hold tubes of blood for add-on orders?”
Apparently, I’m not the only one with questions. In a guest post on the social media site KevinMD, a physician who became a proponent of the strategy, shared his initial concerns about extra time and the need for additional lab work during the visit.
So I did a bit of digging.
Here’s what I learned about previsit lab testing: