[Histonet] Workflow suggestions for MW processing

Green JumpyOne greenjumpyone <@t> hotmail.com
Tue Mar 2 11:23:23 CST 2010

Thanks to all who have taken the time to reply to my question on microwave tissue processing and the resulting effect (or not) on IHC staining.

As you have probably guessed, I am in the process of getting our MWs validated and set up for use.  We are still using our conventional processors, but I am very excited about bringing the MWs online.  That brings up another issue for me:  workflow.  We are a M-F lab, pathologists are here from 8-5.  They will not be changing their schedules to accommodate the new MWs, so I am left with the task of figuring out the most efficient way to manage my staff, the specimens and the processing.

Our basic situation:  I currently have 3 histotechs (and myself, if needed on the bench).  One comes in at 1am, one at 5am and one at 7am.  These shifts can change if needed to make us more efficient.  Paths expect slides beginning at 8:30am.  The MWs are semi-automatic.  They require a human to swap out the cassettes into the next reagent and to press the button to continue the processing.  Grossing is done between 10am and 5:30pm.  We have two MWs, so we can run smalls and large specimens concurrently.

Does anyone have a situation similar to ours?  Do you have any suggestions on pitfalls to watch out for?  Any suggestions on the "best" way to achieve both efficiency and good utilization of my staff?

THANKS for any thoughts you might like to share!

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