Laboratory Medicine Updates - May 2, 2005

University of Virginia Health System

Medical Laboratories

“Quality You Expect, Service You Deserve”

 

LABORATORY MEDICINE UPDATE

May 2, 2005

 

WHO DREW IT??  WE HAVE TO KNOW!!

Typenex labeled samples

The AABB and the College of American Pathologists both provide accreditation to the Transfusion Services at the University of Virginia .  Both of these agencies require that there is a mechanism to identify the individual who draws each blood sample to be used for compatibility testing – those would be the samples requiring a Typenex label.

The current procedure for drawing Typenex labeled samples (available on pg. 43 of the 2004 Directory of Laboratory Services) requires that the person collecting the sample include their first initial and last name on the long red label that is placed on the sample tube.

In a recent audit of 555 samples submitted for TYHD, 11.4% of the samples had signatures that were illegible or smudged and approximately 2% of the samples had only the last name or the initials of the phlebotomist.

Please take the opportunity to review the procedure for drawing Typenex labeled samples and remember these handy hints:

  • If even YOU can’t read your signature, PRINT your name
  • Get rid of those ‘smudge’ pens.  Felt tip pens should NOT be used on the Typenex label

We appreciate your help in meeting the accreditation requirements and ensuring safe transfusion practices.

 

REMINDER: The Use of Swabs for Anaerobic Culture

Will no Longer be Acceptable after June 1, 2005

The hospital store room has discontinued carrying anaerobic swab transport systems as of April 20, 2005 .  The best samples to submit for anaerobic cultures are; fluids, tissue and/or aspirates in sterile containers.  The containers can be urine cups, black top tubes, blood culture bottles or capped syringes with the needle removed.

 

Change in Reporting of Drugs of Abuse Screens

The Toxicology Laboratory is now reporting the results of Drugs of Abuse Screens as Positive/Negative only.  Quantitation is still being performed and, where clinically necessary, the information can be obtained by contacting the laboratory at 924-2029.

 

New Drug of Abuse Screening Available

 

Due to the prevalence of abuse in this region, the Toxicology Laboratory is now offering screening and confirmation for the presence of oxycodone (Oxycontin, Roxicodone, ingredient of Percocet, Percodan, Roxicet, Tylox, and many other formulations) in urine.  If abuse is suspected based on history or clinical presentation, the request for screening should be made in writing on a consult sheet (in-patients) or on the out-patient test request form.  The cut-off for reporting of a positive result, after confirmation of the screening results with GC/MS, is 300 ng/mL.