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BIDMC Pathology Labs Get High Marks

Reviewers from the College of American Pathologists gave the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center Department of Pathology extremely high marks after an unannounced accreditation review of the labs Sept. 26.

BOSTON - Reviewers from the College of American Pathologists gave the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center Department of Pathology extremely high marks after an unannounced accreditation review of the labs Sept. 26.

From being called "the most organized lab I have ever seen," to being told, "I want to adopt some of your policies and procedures at my hospital," the reviewers were clearly impressed.

Judged on a criteria of 4,427 different questions, BIDMC labs were found to have only 10 deficiencies, four of which were directly related to space issues, said Gina McCormack, Technical Director. "It validates the fact that when reviewed by our peers we are found to be doing a fantastic job."

"We have an extraordinary group of very dedicated people and their work here is often done behind the scenes," said Lynne Uhl, MD, Director, Division of Laboratory and Transfusion Medicine. "The success of this inspection speaks volumes to their dedication."

Just as BIDMC underwent its first unannounced inspection from the Joint Commission earlier this year, this was the first unannounced CAP inspection.

Previously, these inspections were scheduled in advance. Federal law requires all clinical labs to be inspected every two years, and the CAP accreditation is the most comprehensive and rigorous standard of review in the world, said McCormack.

Twenty inspectors spent about 10 hours poring through records, observing lab practices and interviewing personnel.

"They looked at quality, safety, patient care records, everything," said McCormack. "They looked for documentation of every single thing, from the collection of blood to sending out the results on the other end."

Department Chairman Jeffrey Saffitz, MD has begun implementing a long-term plan to address inadequate space issues.

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center is a patient care, teaching and research affiliate of Harvard Medical School, and consistently ranks among the top four in National Institutes of Health funding among independent hospitals nationwide. BIDMC is clinically affiliated with the Joslin Diabetes Center and is a research partner of Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center. BIDMC is the official hospital of the Boston Red Sox.