Digital pathology is an up-and-coming practice that is projected to reach 1,139 million by 2025. With the practice becoming more and more popular, it’s important to ensure that you’re minimizing mistakes.
If you’re interested in learning some of the best practices to implement when practicing telepathology, keep reading. We’ll tell you five of the strategies and practices that you should use when performing digital pathology.
1. Mutual Satisfaction
As you work with digital pathologists, you should be sure that they are satisfied with their experience and you’re satisfied with yours.
Many pathologists are used to their usual workflow, one that doesn’t involve digitization. They may find the transfer to a digital workspace difficult or uncomfortable.
There may be some resistance to the shift whether its purpose resistance or not. The learning curve will be hard for some to overcome, and there has to be leeway for your pathologists to understand the new technology.
This all being said, you should consider your pathologist’s past experiences. They may or may not have experience with digital pathology, but this doesn’t necessarily matter. You should consider applicants who show a short learning curve and great accommodation.
If you’ve already hired your pathologists and you’re satisfied, you may want to consider their satisfaction with their current work environment. For example, digital pathologists will be happier with updated technology and clearer images.
You’ll be more satisfied if your pathologists are able to meet the demands of telepathology. Make sure that you’re listening to your pathologists’ needs and wants.
2. Pathology Workflow
Your current workflow may not be the best for you or your pathologists. You should consider if there are better ways to approach your workflow and improve efficiency and ease.
Scanners with continuous loading technology will allow your pathologists to practice batch-oriented processes. These continuous processes will allow your pathologists to work on slides throughout the day.
Your pathologists don’t want to have to worry about a long waiting time between slides. Having a continuous workflow will help them get more work done, enjoy their work more, and get tired out slower.
If they’re waiting in between slides, they’ll get tired. Having a constant, organized workflow will make sure that they will stay energized throughout their shift and complete more slides during it.
You may also want to consider installing barcode and tracking systems so that your digital pathology office will be able to keep up with slides and reduce mistakes or other losses.
3. Clinical Impact
Your pathology results will impact how doctors and other medical providers make decisions in the clinical workplace. Therefore, you should take the clinical part of your pathologists’ work very seriously.
It is worth looking into your digital pathology strategy and implementation. By making sure that your results can match up with electronic medical records and laboratory information systems, you’ll optimize how clinical workers can use your findings.
Having all of the patient’s information consolidated into one place will make the diagnostic and treatment process much easier.
You should also look into getting software that can support your pathologists in their work. There are many types of software that assist in providing precise measurements that are useful for medical facilities.
Another kind of software you should look into is an imaging archive system. These will make sure that different pathologists can share information across locations.
This kind of saving and sharing process will make future identification easier. It also encourages collaboration that can help them gain access to helpful information from other pathologists and their findings.
4. IT Infrastructure
Your IT department needs to be kept in the loop at all times. There’s no question about it.
The images that your pathologists are evaluating require extensive storage space. They also need to be handled properly as they’re received and sent from facility to facility.
If your IT department will be able to make sure that everything goes smoothly. Even if you only have a single site, the IT department is crucial in maintaining a proper technical environment for your pathologists.
If you have multiple sites, IT team members can make sure that every site is connected and working well. They will be able to connect site processes and images through whatever system you all are using.
While including your IT department, you should also make sure to look over whether or not your system is working well for you and your pathologists. The optimal system for your organization should be secure, have enough storage, and work efficiently.
Having the best system for your organization will make operations flow more smoothly. This will make work easier for your entire staff.
5. Track Data
Just like any other organization, you should be tracking those things that do work and those things that don’t work. Measuring your success (or lack of success) is important for making decisions for your staff in the future.
The best way to approach this data is by making sure that you have defined metrics that you want to meet. You can make these by making goals for your organization. Think about where you want your efficiency to be and write it down.
Take the numbers that you’re currently measuring from your company and compare these to those goal numbers. This is the best way of measuring how well your company is doing.
If you notice that you are lagging behind what you’re wanting or what you’re expecting, you can make some changes. The problem could lie with any number of issues, like collaboration mishaps, poor satisfaction, or lack of productivity.
Collecting data on multiple aspects of your organization will make sure that you know exactly where any issues may lie.
If you’re looking for digital pathology solutions, contact us at Specialist Direct. We provide telehealth solutions for those who want to provide top patient care.