Saturday, 12 September 2009


I know the Labtests contract was a controversial decision. Personally I could never figure out why you would replace one monopoly with another. If you truly wanted to keep costs down then surely a competitive system makes more sense. But maybe I don't understand the complexities of the situation.

Anyway, I was happy to give Labtests the benefit of the doubt, and headed off on Monday to have my first sample taken. Speed to process me was a little slow, but every business needs time to settle in, so I wasn't worried. The collection technician was a lovely lady and didn't freak out with my difficult veins - double bonus.

However, the sample was taken on Monday and needed for treatment assessment on Wednesday (I decided to give them an extra day just in case). Diagnostic Med Lab would usually have it with my Doctor that afternoon or at the latest the next morning. It's Saturday today and I still don't have results.

This means I can no longer use Labtests for my tests - one way to decrease the queues I suppose. Now I have to go in an hour early for each chemo treatment so the overworked nurses can take the sample and give it to the hospital labs. I then sit around for an hour taking up space waiting to see if chemo will be administered.

For the system to work as it should, will not just require them to double their speed, but increase it six-fold. Can't see it happening.


Milly said...

I also was willing to give them the benefit of the doubt but my first experience was horrific. First I had to drive twice as far to the lab, then I had to explain the form to them and highlight that my specialist needed the results not my GP. In the waiting area we had to listen to 3 technicians trying to restrain a small boy and all the while he was screaming "get that needle away from me, mummy help me, mummy save me." It was heart-wrenching - he verbalised all our sentiments! I did not like the chairs with the freaky arm-rests - reminded me of stirrups in a gynae office! Med labs used to turn around my results within 3 hours - I have allowed 3 days for Lab Tests. Surely the results will be available before my check-up? Heading in on Wed so will look for you in daystay. x

Anonymous said...

What tests do you need? After my horrendous wait and then inexperienced staff jabbing away I was surprised but pleased to hear you can still go to DML but you have to pay. Thats how the dhb save the 15 million and can I jab a needle into them repeatedly for being such bastards to the Auckland public.
Some of the tests are pricey but a full blood count is only $20. You should get a quote for what you need.

Path guy said...

Annie, just ask your doctor to write urgent on the request form - that will ensure the results are through on time. Make sure the results are faxed also. Please give some feedback - I might be able to help.

Annie Fox! said...

Path Guy: I won't be going to Labtests now until after my treatments finish. I don't have many veins left and having two samples taken for one treatment just destroys what's left.

I'll give them another try in a couple of months when treatments finish.

Annie Fox! said...

Milly: Yeah those chairs are really, really weird.

Good luck with your checkup, unfortunately I'm not in daystay on Wednesday, but am on the 23rd. But we should catch up soon, rather than later.

Milly said...

Just to update you that Lab Test managed to screw up my results - missed a whole vial crucial for explaining my blood counts and determining what to do with my meds. Had to go back today to repeat the collection and it was a shambles. The phlebotomist had to look up every request to determine what vials were needed. Plus I had to tell her to write down the time since my last dose. Plus it hurt. Plus I still do not get those chairs. My arm was perpendicular to the armrest - totally uncomfortable and impractical. I wonder if my specialist will receive these results?? I miss my regular lady at med lab :-(

Lea White said...

We had to use them yesterday for Bianca to see if her counts are busy coming up as they should. She usually gets a finger prick, but they started off asking her to roll up her sleeve and then ignored Bianca's request to use a specific finger, but they chose a different finger. And they were slow. We will phone on Monday to see when results will be there. Will be interesting to see.

Lea White