Setting Up a Physician-Owned Laboratory for GI Testing

What You Need to Know About Setting Up a Physician-Owned Laboratory (POL) for GI In-House Testing

The pandemic has created issues in multiple aspects of our lives. It has caused us to feel out of control and even helpless at times. This is not a feeling any of us like. As we strive to return to some semblance of “normal,” we are all seeking to gain control where we can.

Physicians, if not involved in being first responders, were impacted by COVID as well. Elective procedures were not being completed, screening procedures such as colonoscopies and endoscopies were not occurring either.

More doctors have decided to keep control of more aspects of GI patient care. Physician-Owned Laboratories (POL’s) or a Physician Office Laboratory are not a new concept; however, they are currently on the rise mainly due to the ongoing pandemic. By a Gastroenterologist processing their own biopsies they can control the days the specimens are run, and shorten the days to get results to patients.

Setting up a Gastroenterology Pathology Laboratory in the actual practice may seem daunting to some physicians; however, it is not as complicated as it may seem.

If you are seriously considering a Gastroenterology Physician-Owned Laboratory, here are 8 requirements to consider.

  1. Find a company like Medical Equipment Source that has experience in setting up laboratories so they can guide you through all aspects of the process. The right expertise will not only reduce medical laboratory setup costs but save you from costly errors that can delay lab certification.
  2. Evaluate the number of specimens that you will be processing per month to determine your break-even point and budget for the lab so that you know what type of GI lab equipment you can purchase.
  3. Select a space that can be separated from where you see patients. Workflow and functionality are key to an efficient configuration for patient care and GI in-house lab processing.
  4. Consider utilizing an existing space and keep construction to a minimum if possible. Keep in mind that a laboratory space for processing pathology lab work in-house does not have to be a large area. This also implies that the equipment needed to start a medical laboratory does not have to be too costly.
  5. Contemplating freestanding laboratory tables can be a great option for cost-conscious laboratories. The medical laboratory setup cost can get pricey if one is not careful. They are generally less expensive, require less construction and can give you flexibility in your workflow.
  6. Purchase your lab equipment from a reputable company. As a distributor, Medical Equipment Source offers customized GI lab equipment options. Make sure that the lab equipment company can offer you a warranty and have service personnel to install your laboratory and service the equipment after the sale.
  7. Do not overbuy lab equipment. Make sure that the GI lab equipment you are purchasing is appropriate for the number of specimens that are being processed in your Histology Lab. Be willing to do some manual processes if your volume is low. This will give your lab a better ROI.
  8. Hire a qualified histology technician. It is worth paying a certified, experienced technician to work in your POL to insure quality patient results.

What you don’t know can cost you. However, the right lab setup with the proper certification, equipment and certified lab technician can create a win-win outcome for both the Gastroenterologist and the patient.

About MES

Since 2002, Medical Equipment Source has been providing laboratory equipment services to private practices and independent laboratories across the country and the world.

From lab set-ups to equipment maintenance to consulting contracts, Medical Equipment Source provides a complete range of solutions to physicians and practice managers looking to grow their business by offering their own in-house lab services. Medical Equipment Source provides help with lab and exam room furnishings; lab equipment and layout; consumables; repair services and more.

Today, Medical Equipment Source is an authority in the physician-owned lab market, with clients in 49 states and 30 countries. Those clients range from physicians who have launched their own labs to lab technicians who have built their own space.

Hear from our clients

“They didn’t judge my incredibly small budget but instead helped me get my start,”

says Heather, who started working with MES when she first opened her California lab.

“I’ve been in business for 10 years thanks to that.”

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