[Histonet] tracking turnaround time of intraoperative consultations

Weems, Joyce JWeems <@t> sjha.org
Tue Jun 23 15:11:32 CDT 2009

We track from time of receipt.

One way you could track from time of order is if the specimen is ordered
electronically. We have that set up for some of our units - a
requisition is ordered with time of order, etc. But we couldn't get it
working in the OR - not enough people and printers at ready access.. 

Best, j

Joyce Weems 
Pathology Manager 
Saint Joseph's Hospital 
5665 Peachtree Dunwoody Rd NE 
Atlanta, GA 30342 
678-843-7376 - Phone 
678-843-7831 - Fax 

-----Original Message-----
From: histonet-bounces <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu
[mailto:histonet-bounces <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu] On Behalf Of Della
Speranza, Vinnie
Sent: Tuesday, June 23, 2009 16:02
To: histonet
Subject: [Histonet] tracking turnaround time of intraoperative

CAP utilizes the term "intraoperative consultation" to describe the
utilization of frozen (cryo) sections to provide a rapid diagnosis back
to a surgeon in the operating room.

The CAP checklist requires a turnaround time of 20 minutes for single
specimen submitted for intraoperative consultation. My understanding is
that the turnaround time is measured from the time the sample is
received in the laboratory until the time the report is issued to the

Is anyone tracking or measuring turnaround time from the time the
consult is "ordered" in/by the Operating Room until the time the result
is issued?
If so, would you share how you are able to determine the time the "test
was ordered"  and to what extent you have elicited the cooperation of
Operating Room personnel.

We receive many complex surgical cases and our intraoperative consults
frequently consist of multiple surgical samples from the same patient
arriving in the lab at the same time. Our head and neck cases, for
example, consist of 6-8 biopsies that are sent to pathology at the same
time. In this example, we have no knowledge of which biopsies was
excised first or last and because the surgeon chooses to allow multiple
samples to accumulate before sending them all off to the lab, it's clear
that the true "pre-analytical" time will not be the same for each

If you are tracking turnaround from the time of order to the time of
result reporting, how are you determining what is an acceptable
turnaround time? CAP's standard is the only national standard I am aware
of for frozen section turnaround times.

Vinnie Della Speranza
Manager for Anatomic Pathology Services
Medical University of South Carolina
165 Ashley Avenue  Suite 309
Charleston, South Carolina 29425
Tel: (843) 792-6353
Fax: (843) 792-8974

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