Out­sourc­ing lab ser­vices can have long-term risks

Modern Healthcare - - COMMENT -

Re­gard­ing “Eval­u­at­ing lab out­sourc­ing” (Mod­ern Health­care, Sept. 1, p. 22), sev­eral points should have been in­cluded in the ar­ti­cle. First, hos­pi­tal ex­ec­u­tives typ­i­cally do not so­licit to sell their labs. In­de­pen­dent, com­mer­cial lab en­ti­ties or in­vestor groups gen­er­ally ap­proach hos­pi­tal lead­ers based on ex­pan­sion in­ter­ests of their own busi­nesses. Sec­ond, few out­sourced lab­o­ra­tory ar­range­ments sur­vive longer than five years. And fi­nally, the cost in time, tal­ent and cap­i­tal to re­in­state lab­o­ra­tory ser­vices is a con­sid­er­able in­sti­tu­tional risk. The decision to out­source lab­o­ra­tory ser­vices has long-term con­se­quences that of­ten out­live the ten­ure of the hos­pi­tal ex­ec­u­tive who makes the orig­i­nal decision to sell.

Joe Miles Cen­ten­nial, Colo.

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