The nation’s healthcare system has been steadily shifting from fee-for-service to fee-for-value and patient’s centered models. This transition has created opportunities for clinical diagnostic laboratories to partner within their healthcare systems on initiatives, such as improved patient outcomes, lowering readmission rates, and reducing the cost of patient care. This approach not only provides benefit to patients and the healthcare system but also enables laboratories to play a more integrated role in the care of patients.
With the rapid advancement of molecular diagnostic testing, there is an increasing need for the laboratory to provide education and decision algorithms to help mitigate unnecessary testing. Creating guidelines to help clinicians navigate the increasingly complex landscape of molecular diagnostics is another opportunity for the laboratory to support the transition to value based care.
Optimal utilization of laboratory testing and the implementation of clinician decision support tools have enabled numerous healthcare systems to lower their laboratory testing expenditures and improve patient care associated with high-risk infections and conditions. The mechanisms for achieving, and the benefits associated with, proper laboratory test utilization can be achieved in a variety of ways. Critical to the success of laboratory test utilization programs is partnering with providers in the development of test plans and protocols. Utilizing a collaborative approach across the organization will help ensure adoption and adherence to new protocols.
This presentation will provide information on the how clinical laboratories can utilize testing protocols to help their healthcare systems to reduce costs and achieve goals associated with CMS’ Core Measures and HCAHPS scores. The benefits of enhanced utilization of laboratory testing and the utilization of decision support tools to enable improved patient outcomes will be discussed. Considerations and best practices for effective implementation and adoption of laboratory test utilization programs will be reviewed.