Stability and Performance: The Two Most Important Aspects of a Modern Laboratory Operation

Stability and Performance: The Two Most Important Aspects of a Modern Laboratory Operation

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A laboratory information system LIS is like an alarm clock in that if it’s not reliable, it’s probably time to get another one.

That statement may come across as extreme until you consider the significant consequences unplanned downtime can have on a clinical laboratory or pathology practice operations.  

In this blog post, we’ll discuss the unwanted consequences resulting from unplanned downtime. We’ll also examine how medical labs can prevent it from severely impacting customer relationships and patient outcomes by partnering with a laboratory information system vendor (LIS company) with a reputation for prioritizing stability and performance. 

What is Laboratory Downtime?

First, let’s describe laboratory downtime.

Downtime in a medical laboratory is defined as the time when an instrument or system is not functioning properly or is unavailable to the user.

Downtime can be planned and unplanned. Examples of planned downtime include taking an instrument offline for scheduled maintenance, or a laboratory information system down for a system update. 

Examples of unplanned downtime include server failure, a lab information system unexpectedly crashing and preventing the lab from sending out lab reports to clinicians and patients, or a ransomware attack that paralyzes operations by locking lab data and making it inaccessible until the ransom is paid or the issue is resolved in another way.

Medical laboratory

The Costly Impact of Unplanned Downtime

Studies have shown that unplanned downtime is indeed costly. While exact costs will vary from lab to lab depending on the scale and scope of operations, experts have estimated unplanned downtime can cost a medium to large-sized medical lab up to a whopping $100,000 per hour.  

Consider the following example to see how unplanned downtime costs can rapidly accumulate. 

A smaller lab (Lab X) typically processes 1,000 samples every 24 hours at an average of $100 per case for a hypothetical daily revenue of $100,000. Unfortunately, the lab experienced unplanned downtime that lasted for eight hours. 

To calculate the downtime cost take the daily revenue ($100,000), and divide it by 24 hours to get the lab’s revenue per hour ($4,167). From there multiply lab revenue per hour by the eight hours of unplanned downtime. The cost is $33,333 (an eye-popping 33 percent of daily revenue). 

Now add another $5,000 to $10,000 for related operational costs (labor, repair, and maintenance) and eight hours of unplanned downtime have cost the lab roughly $40,000, and that’s before indirect costs like a damaged reputation, low staff morale, and customer churn have been factored in.

How the Best LIS Laboratory Information System Companies Help Prevent Unplanned Downtime

As we all can see from the example above, unplanned downtime is costly, and when you consider that even the most successful labs work with small margins and depend on reliable reputations, taking the necessary steps to prevent downtime will help ensure lab productivity and profitability in the long term. 

So what’s the best way to prevent unplanned downtime?

It starts with implementing a modern laboratory information system (LIS system) backed by lab vendors that understand the critical nature of your work and the need for a reliable, efficient pathology lab software solution. 

When we say “modern” we’re talking about a LIS system that provides a comprehensive set of modules, features, and tools designed to enhance your laboratory's efficiency, accuracy, and overall performance. 

Here are examples of LIS company and LIS system attributes that go beyond the norm to ensure a lab’s sustained productivity without interruption:

Scalable Architecture: The LIS system must be scalable and able to grow with your lab, accommodating increased volume and complexity without compromising performance.

Proactive Support: The LIS company must have a dedicated support team ready to assist your lab whenever and wherever needed, thus ensuring all issues are promptly identified and addressed.

Advanced Security: The LIS company must proactively implement the latest security protocols to protect your sensitive data and maintain compliance with industry regulations.

Continuous Innovation: The LIS company must commit to staying at the forefront of technology, and regularly updating the LIS software with new features and enhancements.

LIS company

LigoLab’s 99.9% Uptime Guarantee

For advanced LIS system technology and laboratory workflow management best practices that directly impact a lab’s profitability, LigoLab’s commitment to excellence stands out in a crowded laboratory information system software market. The LIS company is widely known for its partnership relationships with its customers and its commitment to excellence features an unrivaled uptime guarantee.

“We proudly guarantee 99.9 percent uptime for our LigoLab informatics platform,” said LigoLab CEO Suren Avunjian. “This means that your lab can rely on our LIS platform to be operational and accessible virtually all the time, ensuring that your critical lab workflow is never compromised. We understand that even a minor downtime can have significant consequences, and we take every measure to prevent it.”

That’s right. LigoLab guarantees uptime. Something no other laboratory information system vendors are willing to do. 

The LigoLab platform is engineered to handle all the demands of modern laboratories, from high-volume specimen processing to complex data management, and the platform’s architecture is designed for scalability and resilience, ensuring optimal performance even under the stress of the heaviest workloads. It also features advanced monitoring systems that proactively identify and resolve potential issues before they impact your operations, providing peace of mind.

“We are committed to providing a reliable and stable platform,” continued Avunjian. “In the rare event of unplanned downtime, we credit our customers for the time they were impacted. This guarantee underscores our alignment with the laboratories we serve and confidence in the reliability and stability of our LIS software platform and our dedication to your satisfaction.”

Additionally, Avunjian noted that LigoLab’s commitment to excellence is demonstrated daily by rigorous development, testing, quality assurance, and processes. 

“We continuously invest in cutting-edge technology and infrastructure to provide a robust and dependable informatics platform that meets the highest industry standards,” he said. “This dedication allows us to offer our clients a seamless experience, minimizing disruptions and maximizing productivity.”

More Ways to Prevent Unplanned Downtime

In addition to working with experienced and dedicated laboratory information system vendors, the best lab operations also help themselves avoid unplanned downtime by prioritizing the following steps:

  • Regularly scheduled maintenance and calibration of all lab instruments.
  • Deployment of redundant systems and backup servers.
  • Real-time monitoring of critical systems.
  • Security protocols with regular audits to prevent cyberattacks and data breaches.
  • Development and enforcement of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) that include contingency plans that address unplanned downtime. 
  • Regularly scheduled emergency drills. 
  • Stable power supply and climate control.
  • Clear communication channels for issue reporting.
  • Strict quality control measures for laboratory processes.
LIS System Stability

LigoLab: Unmatched LIS System Stability and Performance

Stability and performance are paramount in the fast-paced and demanding world of laboratory operations where the best patient outcomes and profitability are top objectives. Without both, a medical lab won’t be able to operate smoothly and efficiently, negatively affecting its vital services. 

LigoLab helps medical laboratories maintain their competitive edge and deliver exceptional service by minimizing downtime and maximizing operational efficiency.

“In laboratory operations, turnaround time is not just a metric; it's a critical component that directly impacts the lab's reputation, customer satisfaction, and patient outcomes,” added Avunjian. “Rapid and accurate test results are essential for timely medical decisions because they influence the quality of patient care and the overall efficiency of healthcare services. Any delay can have significant consequences, from impeding treatment plans to affecting patient recovery.” 

LigoLab’s uptime guarantee, an outlier among LIS software vendors, has been a game-changer for labs in search of LIS systems with the highest levels of reliability and dependability. 

“This high level of reliability reinforces the lab's reputation for dependability and excellence, fostering trust among healthcare providers, patients, and stakeholders,” concluded Avunjian.

The LigoLab Advantage

Choosing LigoLab means partnering with a LIS company that prioritizes your lab’s success. The platform is more than just a tool; it is a comprehensive LIS software solution designed to enhance your laboratory's efficiency, accuracy, and overall performance. It’s also the only LIS company that guarantees uptime. 

Learn More: Navigating the Future of Pathology: The LigoLab Advantage

To see how the LigoLab platform can support your laboratory with unprecedented uptime, contact us for more information. 

Contact a LigoLab Product Specialist

Michael Kalinowski
Michael Handles Marketing and Communications for LigoLab

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