Sunquest Clinical Specimen Collection System at Tucson Medical Center

Championing adoption of positive patient identification for centralized phlebotomy

The problem: mislabeled laboratory specimens 

Tucson Medical Center understood the value of eliminating the potential for error in their specimen collection process. In a previous effort, they had already implemented a centralized phlebotomy team to standardize this process. While this effort was a success, they were still finding incidences of mislabeled specimens. This opened them up to additional patient risk, rework and delays. To further make improvements, they sought to implement information technology that would enable positive patient identification – electronically scanning, tracking and labeling patient specimens at the bedside. 

The implementation: comprehensive training for success

Tucson Medical Center set an ambitious and aggressive implementation schedule of about 2 weeks. To ensure clinical adoption, they planned a comprehensive, two-week training program for their 30 users. The program entailed:

  • Simple and effective staff training guides including Sunquest-provided technical publications provided in advance
  • In-depth super user training followed by train-the-trainer training and finally end-user training
  • Process and value overview presentations to ensure the staff would understand how this would help patients and fully embrace the changes

With the commitment of the team and solid pre-planning, the solution went live on time, with full adoption by the phlebotomy team.  Because the collection manager solution was intuitive enough to use, the phlebotomists were able to start using it a week earlier than expected!

The results: efficiency and zero patient errors

Tucson Medical Center has seen great success in eliminating mislabeling errors and increasing staff efficiency.

“I think the advantage of Collection Manager is twofold.  One is obviously patient safety with positive identification. Secondly, it is streamlining the efficiency of the phlebotomists.  It’s a big time saver –- their whole job is more efficient.” – Mike Vidal, laboratory manager, Tucson Medical Center

It has definitely exceeded my expectations.  Just the efficiency portion alone has made it worth it.  Our phlebotomists love Collection Manager.” – Melissa Tone, LIS Analyst, Tucson Medical Center

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