Blood & Lab News 2015

News reports, scientific articles, white papers and other literature designed to keep the OTIS community abreast of blood and transfusion safety, patient blood management, laboratory process improvement advances, etc.

Dec. 30, 2015
Dark Daily
“Researchers at Howard Hughes Medical Institute Develop Blood Test That Reveals a Patient’s Viral History; Could Reduce Unnecessary Clinical Laboratory Testing”
The VirScan test gives doctors insight into a patient’s lifetime exposure to viruses and thus may be developed into a useful medical laboratory test.

Dec. 23, 2015
FDA News: Device Daily Bulletin
“FDA Awards Bio-Rad 510(k) Clearance for TANGO Infinity System”
Clinical diagnostics provider Bio-Rad Laboratories has secured FDA 510(k) clearance to market its TANGO infinity system, designed to automate routine blood typing and screening testing procedures for patients and donors.

Dec. 23, 2015
[Moffitt press release]
“‘The Pathologist’ names Moffitt Cancer Center’s Dr. Marilyn Bui to its 2015 Power List”
This inaugural “Power List” recognized 100 notable pathologists for their important contribution to patient care—Dr. Bui, editor of CAP Press’ forthcoming Healing Art of Pathology, among them.

Dec. 21, 2015
MNT/Medical News Today
“Blood cell count at bedside steps closer with new biochip”
By Catharine Paddock, PhD

Dec. 21, 2015
Reuters
“FDA overturns 30-year ban on blood donations by gay men”
By Toni Clarke

Dec. 18, 2015
Outbreak News Today
“Transfusion-associated Zika virus reported in Brazil”
By Robert Herriman

Dec. 14, 2015
ProPublica
“The Corporate Takeover of the Red Cross”
Red Cross CEO Gail McGovern, who was hired to revitalize the charity, has cut hundreds of chapters and thousands of employees.
By Justin Elliott
“. . . McGovern had a major accomplishment this month when a federal judge ended two decades of special government oversight of the charity’s blood-banking operation, which collects and sells blood to hospitals. The Red Cross, McGovern said in an internal announcement, had achieved “quality and compliance milestones that at one point seemed almost unimaginable . . .”

Dec. 21, 2015
Reuters
“FDA overturns 30-year ban on blood donations by gay men”
By Toni Clarke

Dec. 11, 2015
The Forum/Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in collaboration with The Boston Globe’s STAT
“MEDICAL TESTS: Inaccuracies, Risks and the Public’s Health”
Moderated by Sharon Begley

Dec. 7, 2015
Dark Report
“True Health Diagnostics Sued by Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland HeartLab; Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland HeartLab claim True Health Diagnostics is infringing patents”
By Joseph Burns

Dec. 7, 2015
Dark Daily
“New Institute of Medicine Report Finds Diagnostic Errors Continue to Put Americans at Risk”
Pathologists and clinical laboratories could help reduce error rate through greater collaboration with providers. One opening salvo in this campaign is a new report from the Institute of Medicine (IOM) titled “Improving Diagnosis in Health Care.” It concludes that Americans will receive at least one wrong or late diagnosis in their lifetime.

Dec. 2, 2015
“AABB and A2LA Announce Partnership to Offer Combined Clinical Laboratory Accreditation”

Dec. 2, 2015
Regulatory Focus (RAPS)
“FDA Offers Guidance for Blood Establishments During Ebola Outbreaks”
By Michael Mezher

December 2015
CAP Today
“A step-by-step process to 95% autoverification”
By Bill Marquardt

Nov. 30, 2015
Dark Daily
“Rice University Researchers Publish Study about Variation in Drop-to-Drop Samples of Capillary Blood Collected by Fingerprick and Used for Clinical Laboratory Testing”
Researchers determined that as many as nine successive capillary blood drops must be collected and tested to achieve results that would be comparable to testing with venous blood

Nov. 18, 2015
HEALTHCANAL
“Blood test results vary from drop to drop in finger prick tests”
Rice study: Six to nine drops of blood may be needed for consistent measurements
By Jade Boyd

Nov. 18, 2015
Dark Daily
“Dental Plaque Could Lead to Clinical Laboratory Testing for Biomarkers to Identify Health Risks”
Researchers have found that isolating a particular gene within the oral microbiome can reveal a huge amount of useful diagnostic information about a person’s heal

Nov. 17, 2015
Fortune
“The FDA to Closely Regulate Lab-Developed Tests”
By Laura Lorenzetti
The move comes in the wake of the Theranos mess.

Nov. 16, 2015
The Dark Report
“Might Lawsuits Come Next in Theranos Story?”
By Robert Michel
Grocery store operator Safeway spent $350M to build blood collection centers in 800 of its stores.

Nov. 11, 2015
The Verge
“Theranos isn’t the only diagnostics company exploiting regulatory loopholes”
Avoiding pre-market verification is downright easy
By Arielle Duhaime-Ross

Nov. 10, 2015
MedPage Today’s Kevinmd.com
“4 questions about Theranos that are actually worth discussing”
By Dave Steiner, MD, PhD

Nov. 7, 2015
The New York Times

“Sierra Leone Declared Free of Ebola Transmissions”
By Dionne Searcey and Sheri Fink

Nov. 6, 2015
Dark Daily
“Clinical Pathology Laboratory Managers Use Lessons in the Best of Medical Laboratory Quality to Improve Lab Operations and Patient Safety”
Nation’s largest gathering of clinical laboratory Lean, Six Sigma, and process improvement practitioners took place in New Orleans this week.

Nov. 4, 2015
Medical News Today
“New anemia treatments expected from major red blood cell discovery”
By Catharine Paddock, PhD

Nov. 2015
CAP Today
“Mislabeling, wrong-blood-in-tube errors rare but there”
By Anne Ford

Nov. 2015
CAP Today
“Analyze this: data shines within and without”
By Kevin B. O’Reilly
The laboratory is well positioned to take a leadership role in medical analytics projects, Dr. (Bradley) Brimhall (Medical Director of Integrated Healthcare Analytics, University of Texas Health Sciences Center at San Antonio) tells CAP TODAY.

“The laboratory is probably one of the areas in the hospital that’s closest to discrete data,” he says. “The hospitalist is accustomed to writing notes, but notes aren’t discrete. If you want to use that information for analytical work, you’re going to have to use natural-language text processing techniques or some other method to parse the information from plain text documents.”

At the War College, Dr. Brimhall said digging into analytics usually earns the lab plaudits among colleagues and higher-ups. “In the laboratory we tend to touch so many specialties that it affords us a more global view. But much of the value requires that we leverage data beyond the laboratory and work closely with our colleagues to carry out important projects.”

Oct. 30, 2015
Dark Daily
“Consumer Reports Ranks Smaller and Non-Teaching Hospitals Highest in Infection Prevention”

Clinical laboratory professionals and pathologists are part of multi-disciplinary efforts to curb healthcare-associated infections.

Oct. 28, 2015
Dark Daily
“Two FDA Inspection Reports Show Theranos’ Blood-Collection ‘Nanotainer’ Was an Uncleared Class II Medical Device”
By Joseph Burns and Robert L. Michel
FDA details findings from visits by five federal inspectors at California clinical lab company over 10 days in late August and early September; heavily redacted reports outline 14 compliance deficiencies.

Oct. 26, 2015
The Pathologist
“The Invisible Doctor: Pathologists have regressed from eminence to anonymity – how did it happen and what should we do about it?”
By José I. López

Oct. 22, 2015
Time
“Scientists Have Found a Way to Make Red Blood Cells”
By Alice Park
Researchers combined stem cell techniques with the latest genome editing strategies to grow red blood cells in the lab.

Oct. 15, 2015
Wall Street Journal
“Hot Startup Theranos Has Struggled With Its Blood-Test Technology”
By John Carreyrou
Silicon Valley lab, led by Elizabeth Holmes, is valued at $9 billion but isn’t using its technology for all the tests it offers

Oct. 13, 2015
Becker’s Hospital Review
“Prominent healthcare executive (Charles C. Miraglia, MD) named CEO of Indiana Blood Center: 8 things to know”
By Kelly Gooch

Oct. 10, 2015
The New York Times
“Afghan Family Remembers a Loving Son Killed in Airstrike on Kunduz Hospital”
By Rod Nordland and Joseph Goldstein
” . . . Blood was always in short supply, and both brothers were Type O, making them universal donors, so when the doctors asked, Najibullah racked his mop in the wheeled pail and Naqibullah locked the brakes on his gurney, and they rolled up their sleeves to donate blood for two of the children, girls 14 and 2. The 14-year-old died shortly after, but the 2-year-old held on. . . .”

Oct. 9, 2015
Thai PBS
“Thailand achieves world’s first blood transfusion in elephant surgery”

October 2015
The Pathologist
“Power List 2015”
Who are the most influential laboratory medicine professionals?

October 2015
CAP Today
“Next step in blood use program: end-of-life transfusion”
By Sanobar Khan, MD; Beth Halperin, RN; and Maria A. Niedos, MPH

Dr. Sandler, left, with Dr. Flegel, center, and Dr. Queenan. Dr. Sandler was chair of the AABB/CAP interorganizational workgroup. Dr. Flegel was among the original investigators who established the molecular basis for the RHD gene. Dr. Queenan is an obstetrician-gynecologist who has focused on Rh hemolytic disease of the fetus/newborn.

From left to right: Transfusion medicine expert S. Gerald Sandler, MD, FACP, FCAP, chaired the AABB/CAP interorganizational workgroup; Willy A. Flegel, MD, was one of the original investigators who established the molecular basis for the RHD gene; and OB-GYN John T. Queenan, MD, who’s focused on Rh hemolytic disease of the fetus/newborn.

Oct0ber 2015
CAP Today
Groups urge phase-in of RHD genotyping”
By Anne Paxton
It may not be quite like boxing frogs or herding cats. But gaining broad consensus on a laboratory medicine practice can be difficult, especially where multiple organizations must agree. A new joint statement on RHD genotyping by the CAP and the AABB, plus four other organizations, shows that such consensus is possible, however, even where it involves a laboratory medicine practice in place for more than 50 years—especially when advances in molecular testing are offering a solution to a problem.

Oct. 2015
Anesthesiology News
“50/50 Rule Ties Blood Transfused To Increasing Mortality”

Sept. 30, 2015
Medical News Today
“A single test could detect almost any virus”
By Yvette Brazier

Sept. 30, 2015
Dark Daily
“Mayo Medical Laboratories Gathers Pathologists and Other Experts to Share Lessons Learned and Successes in Improving How Physicians Utilize Lab Tests”
“Utilization management of clinical laboratory testing is a big trend in laboratory medicine at the moment as innovative labs strive to add more value.”
By Robert Michel

Sept. 22, 2015
Modern Healthcare
“Diagnostic errors a persistent ‘blind spot'”
By Sabriya Rice

Sept. 21, 2015
Dark Daily
“Internationally-respected Experts in Clinical Pathology and Laboratory Medicine Ask: Why Don’t We Know More about Theranos’ Technology?”
This secretive start-up medical laboratory testing company has not disclosed how its diagnostic test technology works, nor has it given laboratorians an opportunity to examine the technology.

Sept. 14, 2015
The Dark Report
“New Developments in $1 Billion Lab Fraud Case”
“Federal whistleblower case reveals details about what appears to be biggest-ever lab fraud”
By R. Lewis Dark

Sept. 9, 2015
Scientific American
“Evidence for Person-to-Person Transmission of Alzheimer’s Pathology”
By Diana Kwon
Study raises question about whether proteins implicated in the disease are capable of spreading through medical procedures.

“. . . Collinge emphasized that Alzheimer’s and prion diseases such as CJD cannot be “caught” through direct contact and previous epidemiological studies have found no evidence that a history of blood transfusion is associated with increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease. However, the possibility remains that certain medical procedures, such as transplants and neurosurgery, may expose individuals to amyloid-beta seeds, and the possibility of transmitting them through blood will likely become an avenue of further research. . . .”

Sept. 2015
CAP Today
“Trials show no benefit from fresher red cells”
By Anne Paxton

Sept. 2015
CAP Today
“Delta checks as safety net: how used, how useful?”
By Anne Ford

Aug. 20, 2015
AHCJ: Covering Health
“AHCJ offers update of hospital inspection data”
By Jeff Porter

Aug. 17, 2015
Dark Daily
“New Microfluidic Blood-draw Device Could Replace Needle Sticks and Venipunctures at Medical Laboratories”
By Patricia Kirk

Aug. 10, 2015
Dark Daily
“Congress Takes Aim at Healthcare Technology Data Blocking in a Move That Might Benefit Many Clinical Pathology Laboratories”
By Andrea Downing Peck
CMS wants pathologists and other healthcare providers to report “every issue—small, medium and large,” when someone gets in the way of information sharing.

Aug. 1, 2015
The New York Times
“New Orleans Hospital Is Replaced, With Hope of Preserving Its Mission”
By Abby Goodnough

Aug. 1, 2015
The New York Times
“Bronx Residents Anxious After 4th Death From Legionnaires’ Disease”
By Benjamin Mueller

Aug. 2015
CAP Today
“IOM report on diagnostic errors expected this fall”
By Charles Fiegl
See pg. 80.

Aug. 2015
CAP Today
“Checklists 2015: signposts are clarity, consistency”
By Anne Paxton

Aug. 2015
CAP Today
“In Memoriam: Pathologist and graceful leader (Ron Workman, MD)”
See pg. 6.

Aug. 2015
Archives of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine
“Comes Digital Pathology”
Editorial by Timothy Craig Allen, MD, JD (University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston)

Aug. 2015
Archives of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine
“Development and Evaluation of a Logical Delta Check for Identifying Erroneous Blood Count Results in a Tertiary Care Hospital”
By Ira Miller, MD, PhD

July 30, 2015
Orlando Business Journal
“OneBlood to merge with Jacksonville blood center”
By Cindy Barth

July 30, 2015
Transfusion
“Blood transfusion and 30-day readmission rate in adult patients hospitalized with sickle cell disease (SCD) crisis”
By Mehdi Nouraie, MD, PhD, (Howard University) et al.

July 27 2015
Dark Daily
“Clinical Pathology Labs Take Note: Death March for Fee-For-Service Payment Model Continues as Support for Change Gathers Steam
By Andrea Downing Peck

July 23, 2015
FDANews: Device Daily Bulletin
“Roche Diagnostics Launches HTLV Assay”
“Roche has launched the Elecsys human T-lymphotropic virus I/II immunoassay, a diagnostic that helps detect HTLV antibodies in donated blood and routine samples …”

July 23, 2015
Comic-Con International Blood DriveComic-Con’s 39th annual Robert A. Heinlein Blood Drive attracted more than 1800 donors this year; over the past 38 years, Comic-Con attendees have donated 15,387 units to the San Diego Blood Bank.

July 13, 2015
ProPublica
“Making the Cut: Why choosing the right surgeon matters even more than you know”
by Marshall Allen and Olga Pierce

July 10, 2015
Dark Daily
“Researchers at UC Berkeley Develop Wearable, Disposable Device for Pulse Oximetry with Technology That Could Measure Other Biomarkers In Vivo”

By Patricia Kirk

July 9, 2015
Vox
“Do no harm: There’s an infection hospitals can nearly always prevent. Why don’t they?”
By Sarah Kliff

July 8, 2015
Dark Daily
“Harvard University Researchers Turn Bubble Wrap into Tiny Test Tubes that Could Be Used for Clinical Pathology Laboratory Testing in Developing Nations
By Andrea Downing Peck

July 1, 2015
KevinMD.com
“An R&B anthem on hospital readmissions. It captures what’s wrong so perfectly.”
Former hospitalist ZDoggMD raps on the ridiculousness surrounding readmissions.

July 1, 2015
Dark Daily
“Wearable Health-Monitoring Devices Could Alter Traditional Role of Pathologists as Gatekeepers of Medical Laboratory Test Data”
By Andrea Downing Peck
Consumers embrace wearable health-monitoring technology as developers find new ways to transfer collected health data directly into patient records

July/August 2015
Medical Lab Management
“Navigating ISO 15189”
By Jennifer (McMahon) Dawson, MHA, DLM(ASCP)SLS

July 2015
CAP Today
“IQCP worries? Help with what ends and begins”
By Anne Paxton

June 29, 2015
“First INTERCEPT Pathogen Reduced Platelet Units Produced in Continental US”
Announced via Business Wire by Cerus Corporation (NASDAQ: CERS) & SunCoast Blood Bank

June 26, 2015
HealthDay News
“New Rapid Ebola Test Shows Promise in African Clinics
By Mary Elizabeth Dallas
Researchers say speedy detection would dramatically improve containment efforts.

June 26, 2015
Medical News Today
“Lab-made blood to enter human trials in 2 years”
By Catharine Paddock, PhD
NHS Blood and Transplant (UK) says artificial blood grown from stem cells will be used in clinical trials comparing manufactured red blood cell survival with that of standard donated cells. [A 2013 MNT report detailed a study showing that red cells in stored blood lose their ability to deliver oxygen after three weeks—half the six weeks current blood bank standard.]

June 25, 2015
“Canadian Blood Services launches national, public cord blood bank”

June 19, 2015
The New York Times
“No Time to Be Nice at Work”
By Christine Porath

June 20, 2015
The New York Times
“Coping With Outbreaks of MERS”

Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center (Camden, N.J.) used this old phone to dramatically improve response to heart attacks.

June 19, 2015
The New York Times
“A Sea Change in Treating Heart Attacks:
“The death rate from coronary heart disease has dropped 38 percent in a decade. One reason is that hospitals rich and poor have streamlined emergency treatment.”
By Gina Kolata

June 16, 2015
AABB SmartBrief
“Update on MERS-CoV in South Korea

The recent Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus outbreak was due to inadequate recognition and infection control procedures. “To date, all fatalities have occurred in individuals with pre-existing disease who were exposed to MERS-CoV infection while hospitalized for their underlying illness. Since the AABB Transfusion Transmitted Diseases Committee began following the emergence of this virus in 2012, there has been no published evidence of parenteral transmission. No specific intervention related to blood donors has been recommended, and there are no new recommendations related to ongoing transmission in the Middle East or the outbreak in South Korea at this time. Donors must be well on the day of donation. In the unlikely event that a potential blood donor reports a history of MERS-CoV infection, the donor should be fully recovered before being accepted for phlebotomy.” See AABB’s Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus Fact Sheet and CDC’s “Lack of Transmission among Close Contacts of Patient with Imported Case of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome into the United States, 2014.”

June 14, 2015
The New York Times
“Experts Fault South Korean Response to MERS Outbreak”
By Choe Sang-Hun

June 12 2015
Dark Daily
“UCLA Researchers Develop Lens-Free Smartphone Microscope, Pathologists May Be Able to Take the Clinical Pathology Laboratory Just About Anywhere”

June 1, 2015
The New Yorker
“Project Exodus: What’s behind the dream of colonizing Mars?
Elizabeth Kolbert reports on the Mars Climate Orbiter crash. Scheduled for orbit insertion on Sept. 23, 1999, everything seemed fine until the $125M craft slipped behind Mars. Scheduled to swing back into the clear minutes later, it never did, burning up instead. The disaster was later traced to a Lockheed Martin software engineer, who had neglected to convert English units into metric ones. “As a consequence, estimates of the force of the orbiter’s thruster were off by a factor of 4.5. There had been several chances to catch the slip-up, but all … had been missed, owing to a combination of ‘errors, oversights, and understaffing …’”

June 2015
CAP Today
“Upper-echelon QA through Accuracy-Based Programs
By Anne Paxton

May 26, 2015
Dark Daily
“More Hospital Closed Due to Empty Beds as Providers Succeed in Reducing Hospital Admissions: Pathologists Should Respond with Outpatient/Outreach Services”

May 21, 2015
The Pathologist
“Avoiding Titanic Errors: The pre-analytical phase is subject to more error than any other part of the testing cycle – what can we do to improve it?”
By Ana-Maria Šimundić

May 20, 2015
Dark Daily
“Has the Time Come for Integration of Radiology and Pathology?”

May 18, 2015
The New Yorker
“Anatomy of Error: A surgeon remembers his mistakes.”
By Joshua Rothman

May 15, 2015
Dark Daily
“ETH Zurich Develops Implantable Molecular Device Capable of Monitoring Blood pH and Regulating Insulin Production in Mice; May One Day Allow Pathologists to Remotely Monitor Patients”

May 12, 2015
The New York Times
“FDA Proposal Would End Ban on Blood Donation”
By Sabrina Tavernise
The Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday released its proposal for scrapping a decades-old lifetime ban on blood donation by gay and bisexual men

May 8, 2015
Dark Daily
“New Point of Care Test for Anemia That Patients Can Administer Themselves Has Potential to Impact Pathology Groups and Clinical Laboratories
Developed by researchers at Emory University, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, and the Georgia Institute of Technology, the anemia test device is awaiting clearance by the FDA.

May 4, 2015
Dark Daily
“Theranos Selects Phoenix Metro to Plant Its Flag and Enter the Competitive Market for Clinical Pathology Laboratory Testing

May 1, 2015
AABB SmartBrief
“AABB blood survey findings presented at NBF Leadership Forum”
Preliminary AABB Blood Collection, Utilization and Patient Blood Management Survey findings show a downward trend in US whole blood and red blood cell collections between 2008 and 2013, with allogeneic collections down 12% and autologous collections down 53%. AABB member hospitals reported an increase in patient blood management interventions between 2011 and 2013, particularly interventions implemented postoperatively.

May-June 2015
MedicalLab Management
“The Changing Algorithm for HIV Testing”
Q&A with Mark W Pandori, PhD, Alameda County Public Health Laboratory (Oakland, Calif.)

May 2015
CAP Today
“QC for accreditation: CMS validation inspections
By Anne Paxton
“… the laboratory is more diligent than any other part of the hospital in keeping things up to date and recording and documenting. There’s nothing analogous to the laboratory accreditation process in other departments, she (Desiree Carlson, MD, FCAP) adds. ‘Nobody comes in and inspects radiology with 3,000 questions.'”

May 2015 [108(4):323-7]
Vox Sanguinis
Presence of medication taken by blood donors in plasma for transfusion”
By AJ van Tilborgh-de Jong et al.

May 2015 [108(4):387–392]
Vox Sanguinis
“Passive reporting greatly underestimates the rate of transfusion-associated circulatory overload (TACO) after platelet transfusion”
By JS Raval et al.
TACO is the second leading cause of reported transfusion-related fatalities in the US.

April 23, 2015
“Centers for Transfusion and Transplant Medicine (CTTM)] unveils new name (Versiti), expanded offerings to healthcare systems”

April 22, 2015
Dark Daily
“Wisconsin Company Developing Breath-based Diagnostic Test Technology that Can Detect Early-Stage Infections within Two Hours of Onset”

April 20, 2015
Dark Daily
“Are CLIA Inspections of Clinical Pathology Laboratories Getting Tougher?
Why It Pays to Achieve ‘Inspection Readiness’”

Experts say CLIA inspections are becoming more rigorous …

April 18, 2015
The New York Times
“Irwin Schatz, 83, Rare Critic of Tuskegee Study, Is Dead
By Sam Roberts
Dr. Schatz’ 1964 letter to the author of a now-infamous US Public Health Service study of syphilis helped frame a patients’ rights debate that generated new standards for human research.

April 3, 2015
USC Blood Management Blog
“Two Unit Transfusions – Habit or Evidence Based?”
By Lauren O’Brien, MD

April 1, 2015
Medical News Today
“1,000-year-old Potion Shows Promise against MRSA”
By Honor Whiteman

April 2015
ADVANCE for Administrators of the Laboratory
“The Changing Landscape of Blood Banking”
“A snapshot of trends and how one independent blood center is keeping up with the times.”
By Steve Negin

April 2015
CAP Today
“How a best practice alert cut unneeded transfusions
By Jan Bowers

April 2015
AABB News

“Red Blood Cell Storage — What Recent Clinical Trials Tell Us”
By Tim Donald
Research results regarding whether long storage periods impair red blood cell function have been inconsistent. Three new studies show RBC storage age is not significantly associated with worse outcomes. Donald looks at possible reasons for earlier conflicting results as well as implications of more recent findings.

April 2015
AABB News

“Test Your Knowledge of the AABB Center for Patient Safety”
Interview with AABB Center for Patient Safety* Director Barbee I. Whitaker, PhD
*A specialty AHRQ PSO dedicated to transfusion safety and quality improvement

March/April 2015
MedicalLab Management
“Develop Compliant IQCPs (individualized quality control plans)”
By Luann Ochs, MS (SVP, CLSI)
[Once your IQCP is in place, use OTIS to help monitor its effectiveness.]

Spring 2015
CBBS Today
“Operational Excellence: What Is It?”
By Geoffrey A. Belanger, Nicole Liautaud and Harry Sussmann
” … increased awareness or adoption of revised Patient Blood Management (PBM) guidelines for optimizing patient transfusion can cause blood usage to drastically decrease. Nationwide, there has been nearly a 25% decrease in RBC transfusions since 2009. Some hospital PBM programs have reported improved patient outcomes from lower transfusion rates as well as larger decreases in blood usage. For blood suppliers, this change in blood utilization and increased restrictions on donor eligibility realigns the focus on improving internal processes by reducing waste and streamlining day-to-day activities. While process improvement is not a new concept by any means, the traditional approach of continuous improvement seems to have evolved into the newer concept of Operational Excellence (OpEx).

March 4, 2015
Dark Daily
“ACOs Are Learning to Use Big Data”
Pathologists and clinical laboratory managers could find opportunity to add value as providers learn to use big data to improve patient outcomes and lower costs.

March 2, 2015
HealthDay News

“Do Heart Surgery Patients Get Too Many Blood Tests?

“New research raises concerns about the risk of anemia and blood transfusions
By Robert Preidt

March 2, 2015
Reuters Africa
“Study finds gorilla origins in half of human AIDS virus lineages”
By Will Dunham

Feb. 27, 2015
The New York Times Book Review
“Madrid Was Burning”
By Paul Berman
Reviewing a new Spanish Civil War history, Berman praises historian Richard Rhodes’ stories about wartime medical developments in Hell and Good Company. “He introduces us to Frederic Duran Jordà, a Catalan doctor who pioneered a technique for administering blood transfusions, and to a Canadian doctor named Norman Bethune who advanced the technique …”

Feb. 27, 2015
President Obama proclaims March “Red Cross Month”

Feb. 18, 2015
Tufts University
“3-D Engineered Bone Marrow Makes Functioning Platelets”
“Scalable model supports patient-specific treatments, advanced study of blood disorders”

Feb. 11, 2015
COLA Quality Advisor Blog
“Pre-emptive Causal Analyses for Change Decisions”

By Irwin Rothenberg MBA, MS, MT(ASCP)
“We are most accustomed to using (root) cause analysis in the context of incident management investigations …”

Feb. 4, 2015
Science Translational Medicine
“A smartphone dongle for diagnosis of infectious diseases at the point of care”
By T. Laksanasopin, et al.
Smartphone accessory tests for HIV and syphilis in 15 min. by scanning blood from a finger prick, and looking for three infectious disease markers—HIV antibodies, treponemal-specific and non-treponemal antibodies for syphilis … showing that a full laboratory-quality immunoassay can be run on a smartphone accessory. Columbia University’s Samuel K. Sia, PhD: “Coupling microfluidics with recent advances in consumer electronics can make certain lab-based diagnostics accessible to almost any population with access to smartphones.”

Feb. 4, 2015
“Puget Sound Blood Center (PSBC) is now Bloodworks Northwest

February 2015
ADVANCE for Administrators of the Laboratory
“Wireless Monitoring Technology for Blood Banks”
“The ubiquity of wireless network coverage, combined with the low traffic impact of temperature monitoring, makes wireless monitoring a natural choice for today’s blood bank.”
By Alan J. Stone

February 2015
“Transfusion-transmission of Measles”
“An acute infection caused by the measles virus, measles or rubeola is among the most contagious of human pathogens, according to the AABB Measles Fact-Sheet. “It usually infects children. Up to 90% of exposed susceptible individuals will develop disease. Infection confers lifelong immunity.”

From Jan. 1 to Jan. 30, 102 people from 14 states (most linked to Disneyland/California) were reported to have measles, according to the CDC. A substantial majority of these were unvaccinated, says ABC. “The US experienced a record number of measles cases in 2014, with 644 cases from 27 states reported to CDC. Transfusion-transmission of measles has never been demonstrated, and is believed to pose no threat to the blood supply. Infectious disease experts in the blood community continue to monitor the situation.” However, AABB  does note that “the existence of cell-associated viremia and the detection of viral RNA by RT-PCR raises a theoretical concern.”

Feb. 2, 2015
Dark Daily
“Class Action Lawsuit Filed in California Names Quest Diagnostics Incorporated as Defendant and Alleges Violation of Antitrust Laws involving Medical Lab Testing
By Joseph Burns

Jan. 29, 2015
Journal of Infectious Diseases
“Evaluating large-scale blood transfusion therapy for the current Ebola epidemic in Liberia.”
By A. Gutfraind and L.A. Meyers
To combat the current Ebola virus disease epidemic in West Africa, the World Health Organization urged the rapid evaluation of convalescent whole blood and plasma transfusion therapy; however, the feasibility and likely impacts are yet unknown. Using mathematical modeling, the authors found transfusion therapy for EVD to be a low-cost measure with the potential to save many lives but not measurably influence the disease’s prevalence, with CP transfusion therapy predicted to achieve greater mortality reductions than CWB therapy.

January 2015
CAP Today

“From the President’s Desk: Making disaster readiness routine
By Gene N. Herbek, MD
” … The CDC continues to do a superb job under difficult circumstances. Researchers at the CDC have worked with Ebola for 38 years and no one handling Ebola (or anthrax) specimens from the CDC has become infected. We know that every human endeavor is subject to human error, but we also know that when mistakes do occur, rigorous root-cause analysis will enable continuous quality improvement. As in so many situations, carefully presented evidence will overcome fear …”

January 2015
Transfusion
“The health implications of low hemoglobin in infrequent blood donors”
By Kyle Annen, Meghan Delaney, Duncan B. Leitch and Alan E. Mast
The study found that a small but concerning number of infrequent blood donors deferred for low Hb have a severe underlying illness, leading them to recommend that donors deferred for low Hb, and at high risk for serious underlying illness, be advised to seek additional medical care.

January 2015
Anesthesiology
“Characterizing the epidemiology of postoperative transfusion-related acute lung (TRALI) injury”
By Leanne Clifford et al.

January 2015
Anesthesiology
“Characterizing the Epidemiology of Perioperative Transfusion-associated Circulatory Overload (TACO)”
By Leanne Clifford et al.

 

 

 

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