© 2022 | WUWF Public Media
11000 University Parkway
Pensacola, FL 32514
850 474-2787
NPR for Florida's Great Northwest
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Local News

Baptist Lab Certified One Of Nation's Best

Bob Barrett

Baptist Hospital Laboratory has been certified again as best in pathology by the College of American Pathologists (CAP). They are one of just 41 laboratories across the country to meet the rigorous standards of CAP accreditation each year since the standards were set in 1963. 

"CAP is the gold standard for laboratory accreditation," said Jan Byard, the Interim Corporate Director for Baptist Hospital Laboratory. "We get accredited every two years. They come in with a team of inspectors. Usually we have about 10 or 11 people that come and interact with all of our departments and make sure that we are doing everything up to the CAP standard."

Byard says if you’ve ever had a test done or a sample taken it ends up in a pathology lab.

"When you come to the hospital or (to) your doctor and something's wrong and they ask you to get lab work performed, blood work, urine samples, anything like that, it comes to our laboratory and then we do whatever the doctor ordered."

The Baptist Hospital lab also has a section for more involved tests. "(It's) for determining if potentially you have some kind of cancer (or some similar procedure), if you have an actual biopsy done, that (test) would be performed in that section." Byard says the services offered in the lab are pretty extensive. "When (people) think of a lab I don't think they understand how big and diverse it is."

Credit Bob Barrett / WUWF

About 150 people work at the Baptist Hospital lab. This includes their outreach team and the phlebotomists who draw samples from patients as well as 60 to 70 medical technologists and laboratorians who do the nuts and bolts of the actual testing. And they are not back there working with beakers and test tubes and Bunsen burners. "There is lots and lots of instrumentation to do all of the work we do back there, so it takes a lot less people to run it. We can run thousands of tests in several hours (as opposed to) what used to be done 40 years ago."

Earlier this year it was announced that Baptist Hospital will be moving to a new building. Jan Byard says she has a wish list for the new location. "We would love to have more space because we are very tight on space. And (we'd like) all modular furniture, because every time I have to put in a new piece of equipment I have to take out some large, set in stone counter top. And after that you have to re do the floors. So the next lab I think is going to be all modular furniture."

There are only three other labs in Florida that made the College of American Pathologists list: Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami Beach, and Lakeland Regional Medical Center.