Henry Ford Health System Enhances Patient Care through Laboratory Automation Partnership

December 16, 2016

DETROIT – Henry Ford Health System Pathology and Laboratory Medicine today announced a partnership with Beckman Coulter Inc. that enhances and streamlines operations by fully automating the Henry Ford Hospital laboratory and modernizing equipment at 12 other Henry Ford locations. These enhancements are designed to increase the efficiency of Henry Ford laboratories, which already comprise one of the largest networks of integrated laboratories in the United States, producing more than 30 million diagnostic reports each year.

“Henry Ford Health System Pathology and Laboratory Medicine is already one of the world’s leading lean-managed laboratory enterprises, because of our highly engaged and accountable workforce,” said Richard Zarbo, M.D., chairman of Henry Ford Health System Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. "When it comes to test results or a diagnosis, patients and their families want answers they can trust, and they want them as quickly as possible. Becoming fully automated adds to our ability to deliver on both of these needs."

The innovative system operates similar to an assembly line. The automated equipment at Henry Ford Hospital delivers bar-coded samples to appropriate stations in the lab, where laboratory personnel perform clinically-needed tests. The equipment then transports samples to a storage area for automatic retrieval if additional testing is required. This automated technology speeds up the testing process, allowing the organization to give large numbers of patients and providers same-day results, and providing tools that expand its capacity for growth.

This year alone, Henry Ford Health System Pathology and Laboratory Medicine is expected to interact directly with nearly 604,000 people in outpatient settings, this is in addition to six inpatient hospitals and 28 medical centers. Henry Ford laboratories also provide clinical testing for patients from several other leading health systems throughout southeastern Michigan and the Midwest. The organization is the only ISO-15189 accredited laboratory in the state of Michigan, recognized for achieving the highest levels of operational systems, continuous improvement, risk mitigation and quality management.

Henry Ford’s laboratory system was recently recognized as a Danaher Business System (DBS) International Center of Excellence. DBS is a philosophy, set of values and series of management processes utilized by Danaher Corporation and Beckman Coulter. The success of the DBS philosophy has been heralded in a number of publications, including the Wall Street Journal, Business Week and the Harvard Business Review. DBS in the laboratory builds and sustains a culture of continuous improvement and employee engagement. The result is improved quality, speed to results, operational efficiency, physician satisfaction and, ultimately, patient care.

“Much like Henry Ford Health System, Beckman Coulter’s dedication to improving the productivity of medical professionals and scientists comes down to one thing – providing the best possible care to patients,” said John Waugh, vice president of Henry Ford Health System Pathology and Laboratory Medicine. “We chose to partner with Beckman Coulter and Danaher, because they are the best at what they do, and they share our commitment to quality, innovation and value.”

“This partnership has been exceptional, because, at the core, both organizations have a laser focus on quality and operational efficiency,” said Arnd Kaldowski, president, Beckman Coulter Diagnostics. “It is inspiring to see the commitment of an organization, like Henry Ford, which has incorporated DBS tools and integrated systems to reach new levels in quality care. This is a great testament to the power of DBS — something we experience on a daily basis and openly share with our strategic partners.”

Learn more about Henry Ford Pathology and Laboratory Medicine.

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About Henry Ford Health System

Henry Ford Health System is a six-hospital system headquartered in Detroit, Mich. It is one of the nation’s leading comprehensive, integrated health systems, recognized for clinical excellence and innovation. Henry Ford Health System provides both health insurance and health care delivery, including acute, specialty, primary and preventive care services backed by excellence in research and education. The system is a 2011 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award recipient.

About Beckman Coulter

Beckman Coulter Diagnostics develops clinical diagnostic products that help advance and optimize the clinical laboratory. Beckman Coulter's instruments, systems and tests help streamline processes to enhance efficiency, reduce costs and expedite the delivery of results. For 80 years, Beckman Coulter has been a global leader devoted to providing solutions to laboratories of all sizes, offering a broad portfolio of chemistry, immunoassay, hematology, urinalysis, microbiology, automation and information systems. Beckman Coulter is dedicated to advancing healthcare for every person and moving science, innovation and the lab forward. For more information, visit www.beckmancoulter.com.

MEDIA CONTACT:
Jeff Adkins
586-307-2027
Jadkins6@hfhs.org