New pathology lab brings first class testing to Airedale and Bradford
A new pathology laboratory with the latest technology has opened today (1 Aug), based at Airedale General Hospital, bringing first class testing facilities to the area. This is the latest phase in a £2m investment in pathology services in Bradford and Airedale.
Pathology at Airedale Hospital is delivered by Integrated Pathology Solutions LLP (IPS), a joint venture between Airedale NHS Foundation Trust and Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. This latest investment in pathology services follows recent investment on the Bradford Royal Infirmary site, where an all new laboratory has also been established. Combined, the laboratories serve patients at both Trust hospitals and also many GP practices across Bradford and Airedale.
The blood testing laboratory at Airedale has been significantly upgraded and moved into a large open plan space, below the new Acute Assessment Unit, where the latest robotic analysers and equipment have now been installed. The previous laboratories will now also be refurbished to create more room for the other teams of scientists, who work on tissues and microbes, to do their work.
An estimated 70-80% of all healthcare diagnoses and decisions are directly influenced by pathology test results so their work is vital for patient care and the new lab and equipment will bring huge benefits.
Hannah Bateson, Operational Manager for Blood Sciences and Pathology IT at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust says:
“There are major advantages to the move, blood sciences involves blood tests for people who are acutely ill in hospital so we want faster turnaround times so staff can diagnose patients more quickly and this equipment allows us to process more samples than ever at the highest level of quality and accuracy. We will also have our scientists in one area rather than split over several laboratories.”
IPS has worked in partnership with Beckman Coulter to provide the latest automated analysers with bigger capacities for the millions of tests it processes every year, including nearly 5 million tests it processes for GPs annually. It is the latest phase of the Trust’s plan to provide leading edge facilities for patient care.
“Our new equipment means that in the future we will be able to process more tests here, which will produce cost savings and bring an even bigger benefit to patients. Tests which had previously to be sent to other specialist hospital sites, and might take several weeks, will be able to be done within the week here in our own laboratories. For example we are looking at being able to do a certain blood test for patients with myeloma, which is a cancer of the blood, and getting that result more quickly will be a big benefit to the haematologists both on the wards and on the Haematology and Oncology Day Unit as it’s a frequently requested test.”
- Last year IPS processed nearly 12 million tests across both sites.
- 176 staff, comprising scientific, technical, management, administrative and support staff working across both sites.
- This averages around 66,753 tests per staff member per year.