Update on the integration of our Microbiology services and lab information systems

Over the past two years, the laboratory teams at St. Joseph’s Health Centre (SJHC) and St. Michael’s Hospital (SMH) have been working on a strategy to integrate services in order to improve the quality and efficiency of lab testing across our network. We are now ready to implement the integration of our Microbiology services and lab information systems between both sites.

Effective July 10, 2018, the following protocol and requirements will be implemented:

  1. Urine specimens for culture and sensitivity will be tested on NEW automation at SMH Lab. The COLLECTION RECOMMENDATIONS for Urine specimens for culture and sensitivity will be:
    • 40 ml to 60 ml of midstream urine for routine microbiology culture of urine specimens. Use the marks on the container for guidance on the correct volume or ask the patient to collect midstream urine for 5 seconds.
    • This volume is needed for automated specimen processing. Urine volumes less than 40 ml will still be accepted and processed manually.
    • Label must be placed vertically on the side of the container.
  2. Specimen delivery from the wards and clinics to the SJHC lab remains unchanged. Specimens will be TRANSPORTED (using a third party Licensed in lab specimen transportation) routinely 4 times per day –from SJHC to SMH Lab for testing.
  3. The microbiology report will continue to be accessible on Sunrise. The REPORT FORMAT may look different for specimens processed at St. Michael’s Hospital lab, i.e. urine C+S and blood culture. (Many thanks to Dr. Ajay Kapur, CMIO at SJHC, for his help and review of the report format changes).

Other Changes:

New ESwab collection devices have been implemented to replace the current swabs across the two sites (SJHC and SMH).

Please continue to share your feedback regarding these changes and stay tuned for more in the upcoming weeks.

Dr. Larissa Matukas, Medical Microbiologist
Dr. Yan Chen, Medical Microbiologist
Adnan Khan, Manager