The Laboratory Service Level Alliance (LSLA) is working towards a fully integrated laboratory service in all Canterbury hospital and community settings that reduces barriers to access and delivers better care, sooner and more conveniently for patients and referrers.
The SLA develops and defines service models for integrated laboratory services that provide efficient and aligned systems, enable appropriate sharing of information and ensure people get the right service at the right time.
This includes ensuring a high quality, cost effective and patient-centric laboratory service is maintained, that patients have timely access to blood tests and blood test results, and that the laboratory service is integrated and seamless regardless of the service provider.
The Laboratory SLA has been fundamental to the Canterbury health system's achievement of a common interface and shared quality, audit and education systems and processes for its laboratory providers. Its vision is for a world-class integrated service that responds effectively to unplanned changes in demand; supports and groups specialist technology and specialised testing; and where laboratory professionals are considered an integral part of the overall health care team.
By providing strategic planning, design and prioritisation of laboratory services across the Canterbury health system, the Laboratory SLA's priority is to balance the demands on the system for patient care and wellbeing with the need for sustainable clinical services and business practices.
The Laboratory SLA commenced in early 2011 to review and redesign the delivery of community lab services in Canterbury. A transitional alliance oversaw the change to lab services being provided by the DHB laboratory and a single private community provider. In late 2012, the present Laboratory SLA was convened to embed and guide the new, integrated laboratory service in Canterbury. The SLA is supported by an Operational Managers Group of key managers for both laboratories as well as five discipline specific clinical workstreams, each consisting of laboratory clinicians for both labs and a referrer from with the community or hospital services.