RE: Case Distribution

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From:"Tapper, Sheila" <> (by way of histonet)
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You have asked a question I have long been too embarrassed to ask!!  My
pathologists insist that we administer a complicated, TIME CONSUMING split
process for them.  When I informed them that the process they have
determined to equally distribute slides would delay the delivery of their
slides by 30-45 minutes every day (No kidding!), they were fine with that!!!
The answer I received when I protested was "It makes better financial sense
for a histotech to spend the time to divide the work, and distribute than a
pathologist, who has many other responsibilities to take the time to figure
it out.  I have a 5-page procedure.  I have so many variables to use in
computing the split, that I had to create a worksheet to be able to
administer it!!!!  When I took the information from the worksheet, and put
it into an Excel spreadsheet.  I charted averages, daily workloads, and
distribution.  I presented it to the Medical Director; he was not
impressed...the current system was "working" well for them.  This, despite
the fact it has created a HUGE rift between the techs and the pathologists.
It is difficult to maintain a respectful working relationship when the
respect is only expected to go one way.  The funny part is...if we should
every inadvertently make a mistake in dividing their work, they know
immediately!!!!  They will come STOMPING and in one case SCREAMING into my
lab to belittle us for making a mistake.  My only question to them...How
would you know we had made a mistake, if you weren't mentally splitting the
workload yourselves.  Needless to say...we are at an impasse, and still
performing the split.  My new lab director is supporting me, but this issue
is obviously a symptom of a much larger issue.  I work with a group of
pathologist that cannot communicate amongst one another.  They are certain
that it is reasonable to have us assign their work to them.  I have
threatened to bring in a phlebotomist to divide our blocks up so that no one
histotech cuts more blocks than the other!!!!  They didn't see the humor
there either.

Sorry for the rant.  I just brought the topic up to the Medical Director
last week - I lost!  He has devised a new scheme though...he wants us to
distribute slides in "discreet linear packages" (consecutive cases - this is
his terminology.  I guess all the time he saves while we do the split allows
him to create new catch phrases for slides on a tray!)  I'm sorry.  I better
stop.  I am embarrassing my organization.  If however, anyone would like a
copy of my Distribution of Slides procedure, I would be happy to share it
with you.  It could be a real laugh for those of you who are blessed with
sane, reasonable pathologists who don't seem to thrive on power, and
appreciate how hard the techs work.  I will apologize in advance to any
pathologist on the net that I may have offended.  I have to say I am not
impressed with the group I am working for now.

Sheila Tapper
Anatomic Pathology Team Leader
SMDC Health System
Duluth, MN <>

	-----Original Message-----
	From:	Woodfin, Amy C []
	Sent:	Wednesday, December 01, 1999 1:24 PM
	To:	''
	Subject:	Case Distribution

	Hi folks,

	Looking for some insight from hospital based surgical pathology labs
on how
	your cases are distributed to your docs for microscopic evaluation.
We are
	in our 5th evolution of case distribution methods and the docs are
still not
	happy.  I would appreciate any information on: how many docs,
average # of
	cases, who does the distribution, is equanimity of cases a goal in
	distribution, and how you determine who gets what.  Any info will be
	appreciated :-)

	Amy Woodfin
	Pathology Supervisor
	St. Joseph Hospital
	Bellingham, WA  98225

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