Generating awareness of the laboratory 


Medical Laboratory Professionals Week, an annual celebration held in April, is a great time to raise awareness of the impact the laboratory has on patients and providers in the community. Lab Week is also an opportunity to spotlight the hardworking staff and the value they bring to the communities they serve.

Laboratory data is an essential part of patient care and supports the provider in delivering the best care possible. Clinicians use laboratory data to make a new diagnosis, confirm the effectiveness or ineffectiveness of a specific drug, evaluate the remission status of a patient with cancer, or confirm that no further testing is required for a patient who has a chronic illness.

Bringing laboratory awareness to your community

Community members are likely familiar with the phlebotomy procedure that happens within hospitals and physician clinics. But do they know what happens when the blood, urine, body fluid, or tissue is sent to the laboratory for testing?

Here are some ways you can celebrate Lab Week — April 23–29, 2023 — while raising awareness of how the community laboratory provides essential health care services.

  • Create a HIPAA-compliant video showcasing what happens within the laboratory when the specimen arrives, what technology is used for testing, and how the results are communicated to a provider. Share this video in your laboratory waiting area, in your internal communications, and on your website and social media.
  • Help your patients discover your different laboratory locations. Can a patient go to any of your phlebotomy draw sites to have their blood drawn, or do they need to come to a hospital? Having a brochure or a link on the patient portal may help a patient get their blood drawn at the most convenient location or time.
  • Share information on laboratory career opportunities. Does your laboratory have a relationship with a medical laboratory science or phlebotomy training program? Lab Week is a great time to invite students to tour the laboratory or to share laboratory careers with high school guidance counselors.
  • Invite senior leaders to round in the laboratory. Encourage your leaders to visit and thank the hardworking team members for their commitment to patient care. It is also an opportunity for leaders who have not visited before to see the impressive lab equipment and technology in action and gain a deeper understanding of what happens in a laboratory.

These are just a few ways to generate awareness of the laboratory during Lab Week. Laboratory staff work very hard, often behind the scenes, and this annual celebration provides a chance to showcase what they do and gain recognition from peers, leaders, and patients. Thank you to our lab colleagues for making a difference in the lives of so many people.

Ellen Dijkman Dulkes

Ellen Dijkman Dulkes is an Outreach Solutions Strategist for MCL. She is a medical technologist and has over 35 years of progressive professional growth within the laboratory. She enjoys meeting new people and helping laboratories to grow their outreach business.