LIVING THE LAB LIFE
A BLOG FOR ASCLS REGION V
Announcing the best overall winner for the 2017 ASCLS Video Contest from the North Idaho College (NIC) Medical Laboratory Tech Program. Check out this submission and share it with your friends to get the word out about our role as healthcare professionals.
I kicked off my day three with a trip to the Clinical Lab Expo, a vendor fair unlike any other. This is a venture shared with AACC to bring together hundreds of vendors to bring us the latest in laboratory equipment and other products. If you have never seen the Clinical Lab Expo: it is sight to behold.
Check out the ASCLS Booth below:
After the Clinical Lab Expo and the lunch provided, it was back to business for a couple more talks. The first I attended was a discussion about laboratory burnout prevention through the utilization of 10- and 12-hour shift schedules instead of 8-hour. This is something I am very interested my workplace implementing, and it was very interested in hearing about other facilities and what kind of creative scheduling they use. The big takeway: it doesn't matter what the schedule looks like, unless you have sufficient staff, burnout will happen. My next stop was a talk on a couple topics in clinical chemistry. Next, an update on tumor markers and catecholamine testing from Dr. Mary Ann McLane and Dr. Maja Chloupkova, followed by some information on the cons of culture independent methods for GI testing, because you can never talk too much about poop. The main takeaway from that talk was that molecular is a strong tool for diagnosing GI infections, but it is not a perfect too, it is not the only tool, and other methods will still need to be employed for full diagnostic work-up of patients.
Now, off to dinner!
The second day of the Annual Meeting kicked off with a keynote address by Dr. Kathy Doig, Professor Emeritus of Michigan State University's Biomedical Laboratory Diagnostics program and longtime ASCLS member. Kathy gave an inspired presentation on the value of involvement in a professional organization. If I was to sum up her presentation, I would give the following quote: In Giving Service to the Profession, You Will Gain in Ways You Cannot Predict.
The next session I attended was a talk on transfusion reactions given by the "the Blood Bank guy" himself: Dr. Joe Chaffin. I could give you a summary on everything Dr. Chaffin talked about, but why would I do that when he could do it himself? His podcasts are available online or you could visit his website at BBGuy.org
After lunch, I went to a talk on hemolysis given by Dennis Ernst, Director for the Center for Phlebotomy Education in Indiana and editor for Phlebotomy Today. Mr. Ernst presented all plan of action for implementing a hemolysis rate reduction plan within our workplaces. He gave us valuable insights into the cost of this issue and the potential benefits (financial and otherwise) to reducing the rate in our facilities. Next, Dr. William Korzun spoke on the use of Reference (Relative) Change Value (RCV) to be able to mathematically prove whether a change in an analyte's value over time is significant for each patient. The math is a bit complicated, but the value is definitely there. Dr. Kathy Doig reappeared in today's program to talk about whether or not leukemia has a familial inheritance pattern. The answer: kinda, sorta, depending on the type of leukemia, to be determined. The final talk I went on had a but of Hollywood appear (maybe that is required in California). Wayne Grody's "Genetics in Hollywood" discussed the use of medical/scientific experts in the writing process to create novel storylines that actual mirror the realities of medical genetics.
The day closed out with the President's Reception and Afterglow Dance Party with the whole ASCLS crew. Those of us in ASCLS-MN took the evening off to go see the Minnesota Twins take on the San Diego Padres.
Don't delay! The membership year for 2017-2018 starts tomorrow. If you haven't renewed, today is the day to do it. Don't miss out on all the continuing education, networking, and career development opportunities available thru ASCLS. Click here to renew today.
Check out SAY San Diego, the charity that ASCLS will be fundraising for at this year's Annual Meeting.
While we all are looking forward to interesting talks, meeting with old friends and laboratorians, it is important that we take this opportunity to gives something back to the community. This year, like in years past, ASCLS will fundraise for a charity in the host city.
SAY San Diego is a non-profit organization that advocates for children using a comprehensive approach by partnering with families, law enforcement, local government, and schools. Their mission is "to partner with youth, adults, families, and communities to reach their full potential." They focus on providing core services like mental health counseling, tobacco/alcohol/drug prevention programs, child abuse prevention, before- and after-school programs, and juvenile delinquency prevention.
Join us in supporting SAY San Diego by donating today.