NPHL Expands automation of more laboratories through the installation of a laboratory information system
By Nelson Akenga
In a bid to continuously strengthen the laboratory health systems, the National Public Health Laboratory (NPHL) has rolled out the installation of a Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) in 19 new health facilities. The LIMS is expected to facilitate the automation of majority of the lab processes such as sample handling, result management, commodity and equipment management among others.
The roll out, which began in the last quarter of 2017 is spread out in various facilities across the country. The selection of the facilities was done on the basis of the facility workload, HIV TB and Malaria burden, geographical representation and equity among others.
This LIMS is expected to reduce the amount of paper work required by the clinician and the laboratory staff through integration of the LIMS and the Hospital Information Management systems (HMIS), reduce transcription errors through interfacing of the LIMS with the automated analyzers, improve turn-around-time (TAT) and also improve reporting to the national reporting system (DHIS2).
Facilities will also have ready data available for them from the system to utilize for decision making. Nationally, the laboratories will also be linked to a national data center for further analysis and interventions on disease trends across the country. The LIMS will also facilitate the move towards ISO 15189 accreditation by the various labs.
The current implementation is being done in partnership with The Global Fund and AMREF Health Africa, and it follows the previous successful implementations of LIMS to other facilities by NPHL and other partners. Most of the labs are already actively using the system and the LIMS implementation is expected to be complete by June 2018.