Wednesday, August 1, 2001

Isle medical lab to get
improved equipment

The gear will help Diagnostic
Laboratory Services raise test
accuracy and speed

Star-Bulletin staff

Diagnostic Laboratory Services is purchasing about $10 million worth of equipment to help improve accuracy of patient test results and speed up their delivery.

One of Hawaii's largest accredited medical laboratories, DLS has signed a seven-year agreement to buy diagnostic laboratory equipment and tests from Beckman Coulter Inc., based in Fullerton, Calif.

About 85 percent of independent physicians in Hawaii are serviced by Diagnostic Laboratory Services. The company performs more than 500 tests and processes more than 5 million tests annually.

It is purchasing comprehensive automation systems for hands-free preparation of patient test samples and automated analyzers to perform a variety of diagnostic tests.

Tests include measurements of blood-sugar levels, diagnosis of diabetes, and cardiac testing, and diagnosis and monitoring of heart attacks and cardiac muscle damage.

Dr. John W. Edwards, president of the laboratory services, said, "We are very excited about partnering with Beckman Coulter to install innovative technology that will help simplify and automate many time-consuming laboratory processes."

He said the new systems and tests will help to obtain test results faster and more accurately.

Jeff McHugh, Beckman Coulter vice president, said the automated equipment will free people in the Diagnostic Laboratory Services laboratories to perform more complex tasks.

"DLS laboratories will have access to new technology that helps increase efficiency and productivity in order to better control costs and improve service to physicians and patients," McHugh said.

The equipment will help the laboratory increase the number of tests it performs without increasing staffing, he said.

DLS services Pacific islands, as well as Hawaii.

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