An Assessment of the State of Current Practice in Coagulation Laboratories

Nicole D. Zantek, Catherine P M Hayward, Trevor G. Simcox, Kristi J. Smock, Peihong Hsu, Elizabeth M. Van Cott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Objectives: To assess the state of current practice in coagulation laboratories regarding three pressing issues: staffing, handling Ebola specimens, and testing/billing for tests that measure direct oral anticoagulants (DOAC). Methods: A survey and analysis of specialized coagulation laboratories in North America was conducted. Results: Approximately 4,000 special coagulation tests-per-technologist-per-year was rated as either a "good" staffing level or "adequate-but-ideally-need-more" employees. Requiring technologists to perform more than that was rated as an "inadequate" staffing level. For Ebola patients, coagulation testing is mostly performed by point-of-care. Only 26.1% would perform coagulation tests for Ebola specimens within their laboratory (rather than at the bed side or a separate designated space outside the laboratory). Coagulation tests offered for Ebola patients were limited: prothrombin time (63.0% of laboratories), activated partial thromboplastin time (37.0%), D-dimer (13.0%), and fibrinogen (8.7%); 26.1% of laboratories did not offer any coagulation tests for Ebola patients. Approximately 35% of special coagulation laboratories bill for at least one laboratory test for DOACs: 33% bill for an anti-Xa calibrated with rivaroxaban, 17% bill for an anti-Xa calibrated with apixaban, and 27% bill for at least one of several tests for dabigatran. Approximately 48% do not offer any tests for DOACs. Conclusions: These results may help laboratories negotiate for additional technologists if needed, prepare for Ebola specimens, and manage the demand for laboratory tests for new DOAC anticoagulants.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)378-383
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Pathology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 American Society for Clinical Pathology, 2016. All rights reserved.


  • Apixaban
  • Dabigatran
  • Direct oral anticoagulant (DOAC)
  • Ebola
  • Rivaroxaban
  • Specialized coagulation laboratory
  • Staffing

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article


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