Media Release - 21/10/11
Canterbury District Health Board has backed a recommendation to work towards a partnership with one hospital laboratory and one community laboratory.
There are currently three providers of community laboratory testing in Canterbury: Canterbury Health Laboratories (CHL), Southern Community Laboratories (SCL) and Medlab South.
However, the Christchurch laboratory infrastructure suffered significant damage as a result of the February 22 earthquake, at the same time as the five year community services contracts were due to expire.
This started the Canterbury Clinical Network’s (CCN) clinically-led service model design process and consultation around developing a service that is best for the people of Canterbury.
There were 295 responses to the consultation document that went out in August to clinician/referrers, laboratory staff and patients, as well as from national and local organisations.
The feedback supported the delivery of laboratory services in a “one health system” approach with clinical governance, integrated IT solutions and service locations aligned with population needs in order to increase and improve patients services and support the overall strategic direction in Canterbury – moving closer to an integrated health system.
A significant majority supported a partnership with one hospital laboratory and one community laboratory with the CDHB owned laboratory being the hospital laboratory. This also supports the recommendation the CCN Transitional Leadership Board presented to the board in August 2011.
The board today adopted the recommendation to:
· receive the Laboratory Services Submission Summary Report;
· approve the adoption a partnership with one hospital laboratory and one community laboratory (with the CDHB-owned laboratory being the hospital);
· approve the move into the procurement phase and the undertaking of a request for proposal (RFP) process to secure an alliance partner for laboratory services in Canterbury and;
· delegate to the Quality, Finance, Audit Risk Committee the final approval of a preferred provider on conclusion of the RFP.
David Meates, Canterbury District Health Board chief executive, says he is grateful to all the laboratory service providers for their continued dedication and efforts to ensure patients receive a world class service following the earthquakes.
“Many are working in new and sometimes difficult conditions. With more than 40 percent of responses to the consultation coming from laboratory staff, I appreciate the extra effort they have taken to participate by providing valuable input into the service change,” David Meates says.
“A consistent theme in the feedback was the high level of knowledge and skills of the laboratory service staff we have in Canterbury.”
David Meates says the level of engagement shows how important this service change is for the Canterbury Health System.
The Quality, Finance, Audit Risk Committee is expected to approve the RFP outcome on November 30, 2011 with CDHB working towards having a system finalised by April, 2012.