Support from LIMS for an innovative, distributed model of working
Scarborough Hull York Pathology Service is planning the deployment of a single laboratory information management system to consolidate the collaborative relationship that has been developed between its laboratories.
The service, which is one of 29 pathology networks being set up through a national programme to drive efficiency and quality, signed a deal with CliniSys for its WinPath Enterprise LIMS this spring. Since then, it has been planning for a ‘big-bang’ go-live across its main laboratories in Hull and York and in a smaller laboratory in Scarborough.
Programme director Dave Oglesby said: “Hull and York are 40 miles apart, and we have been building a collaborative relationship for the past five years. That gained impetus with the decision to create a pathology network and to move forward with a single LIMS.
“The operating model of Scarborough Hull York Pathology Service is built around harmonising working practices, and we will be using the new LIMS to standardise ways of working. We want to go-live in all sites and all specialties at the same time, so clinicians and patients see the benefits as soon as possible.”
Many of the pathology networks being set up in England operate on a ‘hub and spoke’ model, with a main laboratory at one hospital linked to hot labs at other sites. This model would not be feasible for Scarborough Hull York Pathology Service because of the distance that samples would have to travel over roads that can become clogged in bad weather and with holiday traffic. Instead, the service will operate a ‘distributed’ model in which specialist tests are conducted in Hull and York, while all four laboratories carry out high-volume, routine work and support each other if they come under pressure.
WinPath Enterprise will support this model by allowing test results to be shared across the network and generating data to analyse workflows. A linked project means GPs in the area will use a single instance of the CliniSys Integrated Clinical Environment (ICE) to order tests. The service hopes to go-live next year.