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CASE BASE VERSUS SINGLE PIECE IHC WORKFLOWS EVALUATED IN A LARGE REFERENCE LABORATORY

The Leica Biosystems Process and Solutions Optimization team has partnered with a high-volume reference laboratory to evaluate the potential impact of a case based IHC workflow versus an individual slide workflow.

The Leica Biosystems team observed current IHC protocols, staining instrument utilization, and case completion process. This reference laboratory performed 122,733 IHC stains utilizing 2 different staining systems. System 1 included 7 IHC stainers with random access slide capability and System 2 contained 3 stainers with 3, 10-slide racks. Currently, 22 steps, including 2 manual processes are required to complete the IHC staining procedure in System 1. By completing a time and motion study, the Leica Biosystems Process & Solutions Optimization team determined signifi cant LEAN laboratory savings of time, overproduction, and talent.

By evaluating both instrument workfl ows, significant manual sorting times were observed, and data analysis identified the following:

  • Total sorting times for fi lling both instruments averaged 4 minutes, 24 seconds for System 1 and 1 minute, 32 seconds for System 2. Total of 5 minutes, 56 seconds combined per run.
Fig 1(Above) : Current Average Sort Time
Fig 1(Above) : Current Average Sort Time

Time studies further revealed a manual slide rinse and counterstain process specifi c to System 1. By eliminating manual sorting, counterstaining, and slide rinsing with System 2’s case-based approach, appropriate instrumentation utilization can yield substantial improvements in time savings, hand-on time, and touchpoints.

Current hands-on time for System 1:

  • Individual slide staining process totals 89.8 seconds per slide, totaling 3059 hours per year.
Fig 2(Above) : Hands On Time Comparison
Hands On Time Comparison

Proposed hands-on time for System 2:

Fig 3(Above) : 69% reduction in hands-on time
69percent-reduction_in_hands
  • Case base model reduces total hands on time to 28.2 seconds per slide, totaling 961 total hours per year a 69% difference between current and proposed staining processes.

This reference document is presented as a service to health care professionals by Leica Biosystems and has been compiled from available literature. Although every effort has been made to report faithfully the information, Leica Biosystems cannot be held responsible for the correctness. This document is not intended to be, and should not be construed as medical advice. For any use, the product information guides, inserts and operation manuals of the various drugs and devices should be consulted. Leica Biosystems and the editors disclaim any liability arising directly or indirectly from the use of drugs, devices, techniques or procedures described in this reference document.