Inpatient phlebotomy practices: A College of American Pathologists Q- Probes quality improvement study of 2 351 643 phlebotomy requests

P. J. Howanitz, R. B. Schifman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Scopus citations


We report outcomes of requests for inpatient phlebotomy procedures from 683 institutions participating in the College of American Pathologists Q- Probes programs. Of the 2 351 643 phlebotomy requests analyzed, 93.2% of venipunctures were successful, 1.6% were unsuccessful, 0.4% were partially successful, and 4.9% were not attempted by the assigned phlebotomist. Administrative inefficiencies prevented the assigned phlebotomist from attempting these venipunctures of which the most frequent reasons were patient unavailability (1.4%), patient transferred or discharged (0.9%), followed by the specimen already collected by someone else (0.7%). These results suggest that performance improvement of phlebotomy services, in general, would achieve the greatest gains by focusing attention to specific processes associated with administrative inefficiencies identified, rather than phlebotomists' technical skills.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)601-605
Number of pages5
JournalArchives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jan 1 1994
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Medical Laboratory Technology

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