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Quick Question: Specimen Hemolysis

Here are the 6-7-17 results of our latest Quick Question survey. The topic of specimen hemolysis came up in a lengthy December 6, 2016 entry featuring comments from Dennis Ernst, Center for Phlebotomy Education.

Q: What approach do your facility’s nurses use to reduce specimen hemolysis at the time they are starting IVs?

a. Collect from the IV kit using syringes: 12 (16%)
b. Use IV kits with 22-gauge or larger catheters: 5 (7%)
C. Collect from the IV kit using small evacuated tubes: 11 (14%)
d. Do not collect from IV, perform a separate venipuncture 22 (29%
e. Lab personnel do not monitor collection during IV starts: 26 (34%)

Perhaps the most compelling argument we have learned from this survey is the lack of laboratory involvement in a process whose results have profound effects. It may be that we laboratory professionals could involve ourselves actively in specimen management issues in the emergency department and throughout our facilities.

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