Detecting Preanalytical Errors Using Quality Indicators in a Hematology Laboratory.

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From: Quality Management in Health Care(Vol. 31, Issue 3)
Publisher: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, WK Health
Document Type: Brief article
Length: 334 words

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Byline: Khalid Alshaghdali, Department of Medical Laboratory Science, College of Applied Medical Sciences, University of Hail, Saudi Arabia (Drs Alshaghdali, Rezgui, and JC Alcantara and Ms TY Alcantara); Department of Medical Laboratory Science, School of Pharmacy, College of Health Sciences, University of Wyoming, Casper (Dr Cruz); and Department of Clinical Laboratory, Maternity and Pediatric Hospital, Hail, Saudi Arabia (Messrs Alshammary and Almotairi).; Tessie Y. Alcantara; Raja Rezgui; Charlie P. Cruz; Munif H. Alshammary; Yasser A. Almotairi; Jerold C. Alcantara Abstract BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Monitoring laboratory performance continuously is crucial for recognizing errors and fostering further improvements in laboratory medicine. This study aimed to review the quality indicators (QIs) and describe the laboratory errors in the preanalytical phase of hematology testing in a clinical laboratory. METHODS: All samples received in the Hematology Laboratory of the Maternity and Pediatric Hospital in Hail for 3 years were retrospectively reviewed and evaluated for preanalytical issues using a set of QIs. The rate of each QI was compared to the quality specifications cited in the literature. RESULTS: A total of 95002 blood samples were collected for analysis in the hematology laboratory from January 2017 through December 2019. Overall, 8852 (9.3%) were considered to show preanalytical errors. The most common were "clotted specimen" (3.6%) and "samples not received" (3.5%). Based on the quality specifications, the preanalytical QIs were classified generally as low and medium level of performance. In contrast, the sigma-based performance level indicates acceptable performance on all the key processes. Further analysis of the study showed a decreasing rate of preanalytical errors from 11.6% to 6.5%. CONCLUSIONS: Preanalytical errors remain a challenge to hematology laboratories. The errors in this case were predominantly related to specimen collection procedures that compromised the specimen quality. Quality indicators are a valuable instrument in the preanalytical phase that allows an opportunity to improve and explore clinical laboratory process performance and progress. Continual monitoring and management of QI data are critical to ensure ongoing satisfactory performance and to enhance the quality in the preanalytical phase.

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A707820660