The PEMT contains a Results Comparison function that demonstrates the effect of changes to the labor force, equipment, or materials on the laboratory workflow and on the budget.
Data input for the PEMT was obtained from the routine histopathology and immunocytochemistry pathology laboratory at TNMC by directly observing staff through all manual steps, including accessioning and grossing of specimens; processing blocks; embedding of sections; cutting (microtomy), sorting, and distributing slides, including routine, special, and immunohistochemical (IHC) stains; quality assurance activities; and archiving of slides and blocks following pathologist review.
The cost per slide estimated by the PEMT was then compared with the relative value unit (RVU) cost per slide as estimated by TNMC.
Finally, data from TNMC were compared with aggregated data from 14 other laboratories that had been previously evaluated using the PEMT.
The total time for daily labor and instrument use calculated by the PEMT for each of the workflow processes analyzed at TNMC anatomic pathology laboratory are summarized in Figure 2.
To give an overview of expenditures, the PEMT was used to determine the percentage of the budget allocated to labor, materials, equipment, and all other components (eg, overhead, facility costs, information technology, and service contracts).
However, the PEMT reveals that this cost is primarily due to the high costs of labor and overhead, which together contribute approximately 80% of the total cost for a single H&E stain.
The slide cost estimates for materials (including equipment cost) in the preparation of H&E- and IHC-stained slides are in good agreement between the PEMT analysis and the RVU calculations.
As part of the PEMT analysis, the number of workflow defects, as well as the success rates (workflow throughput without defects as a percentage of total workflow throughput for a specific process), were measured for each workflow process (Table 3).
One of the questions that arise when assessing the results of the PEMT analysis of the workflow at TNMC is: How efficient is this specific laboratory in comparison to other laboratories?
91% of the labor time needs estimated by the PEMT analysis (allocated labor).
Implementation of the PEMT resulted in answers to important questions including: How do we use the available resources?