When a provider orders a test from the lab, time is often of the essence. Samples need to be collected properly, tested accurately, and reported as clearly and quickly as possible. Sometimes life hangs in the balance.
“All of the tests we do need to be done stat, whether in the ED or the OR,” says John Dvorak, technical specialist at Fairview Ridges Hospital. “Providers need results as fast as possible.”
“They rely on correct results,” says Alice Hassler, lab care technician at Fairview Clinics – Andover. “Test results paint the picture of a patient’s health so the provider can make an informed decision on treatment.”
From collection to results
The work of our lab teams starts with the collection of body fluid samples. The most common may be the blood draw—something Alice works hard to make easier for patients.
“A lot of people hate getting their blood drawn, they really fear it,” says Alice. “I love making them feel comfortable and showing them I’m confident in what I’m doing. I’m not going to hurt them.”
From there, a sample goes to a lab for chemical analysis. Thousands of tests are run each day at labs located at our clinics and hospitals, as well as offsite labs that run less time-sensitive tests.
Some members of our lab team handle highly complex, specialized cases. Andinet Teferra, medical laboratory scientist at University of Minnesota Medical Center, analyzes blood, bone marrow and tissue samples to diagnose leukemia and lymphoma.
“Our work puts a name to a problem a patient has had for a while,” says Andinet. “It also contributes greatly to their care and recovery. There’s a lot of satisfaction in helping people get better.”
Every test, every patient
Working in a lab with samples in test tubes may seem very distant from a high-touch world of health care. On the contrary, our lab team members feel a deep conviction about the importance of their work.
“It’s rewarding to have a sick patient get treated based on what was found in their labs,” says Alice. “Seeing them come back healthy is even better.”
“Departments are focused on the patients in their unit, but we’re kind of in the middle of everything,” says John. “We see every patient as our patient.”
We’re recognizing our lab team for National Medical Laboratory Professionals Week. Know someone who’d be a great addition to the team? Check out our openings at jobs.fairview.org.