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ABG's

  • 1.  ABG's

    Posted 07-09-2019 13:42
    The lab where I work is currently having a debate as to who should draw ABG's - Respiratory or Lab.  So, I'm curious as to what other folks are doing.  We are a small rural hospital (1 day, 1 night and 1 evening MLT/MT and a lab mgr. who is days only,  Respiratory: 1 day, 1night).  Thanks!


  • 2.  RE: ABG's

    Posted 07-09-2019 14:12
    Small rural lab
    ABGs: Respiratory therapist or ER/ED/ICU RNs.


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    Abou Drammeh
    MLS (ASCP)

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  • 3.  RE: ABG's

    Posted 07-10-2019 07:17
    Decades ago at the hospital where I worked, this question arose when the surgeons and others wanted improved turn around times on ABGs.  They proposed that respiratory do it.  A strong pathologist said "if it is a lab test, then we will do it in the lab", after all, who knows laboratory testing better and already has the equipment and quality systems to do it?  So we devised a system for the lab to draw ABGs (I was trained) and give them an improved TAT.  But other institutions did not follow that.  The unexpected effect of giving away a bit of our scope of practice was that when we sought licensing for laboratory professionals, we had to exclude respiratory therapists doing ABGs or face additional resistance to the bill.  (Ideally of course, we wanted them to be licensed too).

    Now, this was a large hospital and far more personnel on whom to rely.  But at minimum, I am of the opinion that the laboratory should retain the responsibility and if respiratory staff need to be trained to do it for staffing reasons,  train them according to laboratory protocols and oversight.

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    [Kathy] [Doig]
    [Leadership Development Committee Chairperson 2018-19]

    [doig@msu.edu]
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  • 4.  RE: ABG's

    Posted 07-10-2019 21:28
    Over the course of 15 years, I had the opportunity to work in three small, rural Critical Access Hospital laboratories. In each of these, it was laboratory staff who always collected all blood specimens, including arterial blood gases, as well as the rare capillary blood gas. In each of these labs, it was never a choice, it was an expectation.

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    Jeffrey Radle
    Lab Business Manager
    Essentia Health
    Two Harbors MN
    (218) 390-6181
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  • 5.  RE: ABG's

    Posted 07-10-2019 21:30
    Forgot to add, staffing was a mix of MT/MLT; staff were generally on their own in the evenings and overnights.

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    Jeffrey Radle
    Lab Business Manager
    Essentia Health
    Two Harbors MN
    (218) 390-6181
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  • 6.  RE: ABG's

    Posted 07-11-2019 08:26
    We are a large teaching hospital and respiratory is generally responsible for ABGs.  There are times when providers may collect, but lab staff are not.  ​

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    Jennifer Slater
    Administrative Manager
    Michigan Medicine
    Ann Arbor MI
    (734) 936 - 6731
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  • 7.  RE: ABG's

    Posted 07-11-2019 20:59
    Thanks everyone for your input.  I will pass your thoughts and comments on to my coworkers.

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    Barbara Harvey
    --
    Lander WY
    3073355002
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