Now more than ever, laboratories, especially medical ones, need to adapt and rethink their workflow to adequately address today’s patients’ needs. Although there are many that have been calling for new medical laboratory design strategies to help streamline operations in labs for a long time, the lessons learned from the global pandemic have proven the requirement for change. There are plenty of new ways to improve workflow in a lab. Read on for a few tips to create a seamless workflow in your lab!
Consider Your Laboratory’s Location
Crucial to the optimization of any medical laboratory design is its location. Core labs located inside a hospital have the advantage of close proximity to pathologists and patients, but they do present an expensive solution. Rapid response laboratories placed in acute care hospitals facilitate swift turnarounds for important tests, but the premium space they could occupy must be considered. System-wide reference laboratories are located off-site and are fully suited to take advantage of the latest technology. While used in tandem with a more urgent on-site laboratory, system-wide reference laboratories handle the higher volumes of less time-sensitive tests.
Automate Any Specimen Processing
With thousands of tests that patients might need and hundreds ordered on a normal basis, efficient specimen processing is a big component of your laboratory’s workflow. This aspect of laboratory work has been shifting in favor of automation as the amount of professionals decreases as test volumes keep on rising. Medical laboratory design with automated analysis includes different functions like robotic tracks, which handle carrying the specimens to reduce the risk of contamination as much as possible with hand-carrying. While combined with medical laboratory setup design principles like maintaining flexible and open spaces and creating an unobstructed linear flow of different specimens, your laboratory’s processing time will significantly improve.
Rethink the Floor Plan
Medical laboratory interior design that considers the allocation and use of different spaces results in efficient and flexible facilities. Open laboratories with ceiling-mounted plug-and-play services will allow equipment to be moved easily, while all including movable and reconfigurable casework will ensure that the proper materials are always available. In addition, assigning a specific area to R&D and growth will keep your laboratory on the cutting edge of emerging science. Open planning and some modular design enable your laboratory to establish flexibility and the ability to expand fully into the future, adapting alongside any technological advances to the changing needs of patients.
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