In 2012 Starlims was deployed at the National Neonatal Screening Laboratory, to manage every aspect of the screening workflow. The system has streamlined analytical processing, data collection and reporting, and reduced the need for manual data entry. A full audit trail for each patient and sample is guaranteed. Starlims has allowed the laboratory to reduce the turnaround time from sample receipt to results reporting, from an average of 72 hours to just 28 hours.
- Starlims connects directly to multiple analytical, clinical and administrative departments, allowing seamless communication and consultation:
- Registration and coding
- Hormones and hemoglobins
- Amino acids and acylcarnitines
- Genetics and metabolism service
- Quality management
- Information technology
- First and second samples for each patient are detected, scheduled and processed automatically. All activity associated with a patient’s identifier is logged and the data centralized. There is complete traceability for each sample, and no chance of confusion between first and second samples.
- Barcoding has reduced physical manipulation of the sample, and guarantees complete sample traceability.
- Results are imported through an interface with the laboratory equipment, so manual entry of results is unnecessary. This saves considerable time and removes the chance of manual error.
- 95% increase in laboratory efficiency: key processes have been optimized and automated, including results importation, registration and classification of samples, identification of second samples, reports and querying, sample traceability.
- Sample digitization time has been dramatically reduced, from 30 days, to one day. Using the previous system, for which there was a single license, digitization was carried out by just one individual. Using Starlims all personnel qualified for data entry can digitize images within the centralized system, and there is no need to access separate software to view the digitized files.
- Final reports are generated automatically, and instantly, rather than taking several hours.
- Sample tracking errors have been reduced by 100%, because processes that were previously carried out manually, such as sample drilling, have been eliminated.
- Processing time from sample receipt to results reporting has been dramatically reduced from 72 hours, to an average of just 28 hours.
With Starlims there is no ambiguity when it comes to vital communication between departments and between the laboratory and a patient’s family. Starlims provides a communications log module so that all communications, notes, registers and other documents for each patient and sample can be accessed by all laboratory personnel with the required permissions. This has removed unnecessary repeat communications. Conversely, staff can verify that important communications have been made. For example, relevant staff are informed when a patient’s family has been contacted by another department to request a second sample.Sergio Obando