Last year, Sunquest announced the new Sunquest Client Innovation Awards. This program is a recognition given to Sunquest clients who took an innovative approach to improving laboratory operations and patient care through Sunquest solutions. Winners were selected by Sunquest and SUG Inc. from applications submitted. We are pleased to announce this year’s winners.
This year’s selected organizations include:
In many ways, the process of designing the new Sunquest Information Systems logo and overall branding was similar to the process that many corporations or individuals employ when rebranding. At Sunquest we began with introductory Q & A meetings including the important stakeholders to discuss overall goals, determine the general feel of the logo (serious or whimsical, classy or cutting-edge) determine a particular logo style (wordmark, iconic symbol, a combination of the two, or a more illustrative approach) and predict all or most use-case scenarios for the logo. Myself, along with the key stakeholders, knew we wanted the new logo and brand to represent an emphatic statement about our commitment to making health care smarter and patients safer globally through diagnostic innovation. In addition, we took into account that Sunquest is a market-leading, global organization with a community-wide approach and is focused on innovation. The primary takeaways discovered in the initial Q & A meetings, along with other aspects, had a direct relationship to the final logo design.
We are excited to announce that Sunquest has a new logo!
Sunquest’s new logo represents an emphatic statement about our commitment to making healthcare smarter and patients safer globally through diagnostic innovation. The gray, with just a hint of blue, represents our strength and differentiation. We stand out. We are uniquely changing healthcare. “Sun” is bolded as a reminder that we are always looking up and moving forward. The circle, in a bright green, represents our global impact, community-wide approach and focus on innovation. The bold color along with the period is a definitive statement about who we are and what we represent.
We exemplify strength of purpose, persistence and determination
We are united in a common purpose to make healthcare smarter and patients safer – 1 billion of them. Our persistence to change the practice of diagnostics for the better will leave a lasting mark we can all be proud of.
A leading pathologist I worked with at a previous company, would ask project teams if what they were working on would “change the practice of healthcare?” He did this to ensure they had not veered from their purpose and were actively thinking about how it would impact clinicians. Would it help them give their patients the critical and timely answers they needed – “Do I have cancer?”, “What are my treatment options?”, etc. Staying focused on purpose is an important part of tenacity.
The genetics industry is buzzing with energy thanks to the growing body of knowledge and experiences through genetics positively impacting care. Last fall, Sunquest attended two important genetic industry conferences with GeneInsight: the American Society of Human Genetics conference (ASHG) in Baltimore and the Association for Molecular Pathology (AMP) in Austin. We had adjoining booth spaces to better present a unified message to the attendees.
At ASHG, we introduced a new GeneInsight release with the ability to annotate, filter and store patient variants. This new functionality helps users move upstream from the interpretation phase of the workflow and is a critical part of large panel and exome scale testing. This release also prepared GeneInsight for the integration with Sunquest Laboratory and Sunquest AP systems.
We act quickly, decisively and pursue the fastest course to accurate solutions. We take calculated risks.
I would like to focus this message on the second part of the definition, “We take calculated risks.” It is human nature to overestimate the possibility of failure and underestimate our ability persevere. We tend to shy away from the unknown and like to stay within our own comfort zone. However, in our effort to be risk averse, we often lose sight of the consequence of inaction. In the client implementation world that I live in, we often hear statements such as “Let’s play it safe by delaying this go-live”, but when making this decision, we rarely evaluate the full impact of the decision. Is it really “safe” to delay the usage of a system such as Collection Manager providing positive patient ID? Are we helping our patients when we delay the usage of an instrument that can get them the test results faster?
I had the pleasure of attending and presenting at this year’s Lab Quality Confab in the Big Easy last week. Lab Quality Confab is an excellent opportunity for lab managers, administrators and quality team members to get together for educational sessions and quality networking time with each other and vendors. Most of the discussions were focused around sharing best practices to help improve processes and increase the value of services that we all provide to our clients, physicians, patients and payers. The agenda was jam packed with speakers from all over North America.
We constantly stretch ourselves to efficiently achieve the best results. Our curiosity leads us to solve problems most people cannot.
Innovation is the key to success for all organizations, from startups to large businesses. Businesses that do not innovate do not survive and are left in the dust behind companies exceling at innovation. Software companies, much like ours, must continue to be thought leaders in our industry and create innovative solutions for ourselves and our clients. Our clients and our success depend on it!
Sunquest was interviewed by Health Data Management about Roper’s recent acquisitions.
Health Data Management writes a summary of the impact of Roper Technologies’ recent acquisitions of Atlas Medical, a leading provider of clinical process and connectivity solutions in the U.S., and CliniSys Group, one of the largest European suppliers of laboratory information management systems (LIMS).
The challenge of genetic variant classification
We use to receive new results reports via fax. Since many ordering providers share the same fax number, it required an additional step to make sure all ordering providers received a copy of the results. When it came to variant updates, we had to seek out this information from the lab. This was often prompted by a return visit to clinic or a new development in the patient’s medical or family history. We would then need to use our internal database to determine who else in this family was impacted by the variant update. This was a very slow and inefficient process—and we hadn’t even gotten to the hard work of updating everyone on the results.
We seek to get it right, the first time
I believe flawless execution is a destination that reflects Sunquest’s dedication to its core values. Flawless execution does not happen by accident nor does it create an environment where accidents do not happen. It is the culmination of careful planning, open and honest communication and holding one another accountable. It encompasses the drive for perfection and getting it right with purity of focus and effort. Flawless execution does not happen overnight, but requires dedication and tenacity to make it a reality.
Matthew Hawkins, president of Sunquest Information Systems, quoted in HealthcareITInteroperability article.
In a recent interview with HealthITInteroperability, Matthew Hawkins, president of laboratory software developer Sunquest Information Systems, said the three most important variables in today’s healthcare market are time, cost and patient safety. “In other words, it comes down to accurate diagnosis,” Hawkins explained.
We love helping our clients when they run into problems. Even more than that, we love equipping our clients with information that will help them prevent problems and lessen their need to spend valuable time reporting issues to us. Here is a helpful tip to keep your SMART labels printing at top speed!
SMART Label Tip:
Message queuing may cause labels to stop printing if too many messages have accumulated in the private message queue on the SMART server(s).
The SLPS message that logs in the SMART message log will include “Cannot put a print job into the printer queue”. For example:
Staying Relevant in Today’s Healthcare Landscape
1. Increase face time with clinical colleagues in direct patient care and take ownership of the entire testing process. This includes appropriate test selection and clear, concise interpretation to help improve experience and safety. Patient safety should always be #1.
2. Go Social! Get in front of partners and patients on social media—but don’t forget to interact with them! Engagement drives satisfaction. Remember: communication must be tailored for the audience and device, so don’t be afraid to go mobile, but make sure the content matters.
The Institute of Medicine (IOM) will soon publish (on September 22, 2015) another follow-up to their 1999 report, “To Err is Human.” This new report will include an examination of diagnostic errors, their etiology and their prevention. With more than 1000 deaths and 10,000 serious preventable adverse events occurring per day, combined with the more than $1 trillion dollars lost annually attributed to these errors, healthcare leaders must commit every day to better and safer care – and deliver.
Information technology in genetic testing
In addition to major technology advancements, testing is much more reliant on informatics solutions. Laboratories have significant challenges in the interpretation of a much increased number of sequence variants which is, of course, a critical step in providing patients useful test results. As such, labs must have robust bioinformatics and IT systems to support their diagnostic testing and interpretation workflows.
We build trust by making and keeping commitments
What company would not agree that integrity belongs on its list of corporate values? Some even go so far as to suggest that integrity is such an obvious, fundamental building block of any successful business that it does not make sense to even mention it in a values list or mission statement. It is akin to saying, “We do not believe in stealing.”
Diagnostic Laboratory Goes Social to Influence Clinical Innovation
Looking to engage employees and inspire innovation across your organization? Take a look at how TriCore Reference Laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico, is doing just that.
With a new business plan underway and a transition in executive leadership, the diagnostic company launched their social network, Yammer, in June 2014. Within six months, 1,022 employees signed up as Yammer users.
SUG Inc. would like to announce that we have established a new special interest group (SIG) for Cerner HIS users. This SIG leverages your voice and Sunquest’s industry connections by working with Cerner to address the issues Sunquest clients are facing with connectivity and interoperability between the systems.
Bakul Thakkar, from site UIC, is the Cerner SIG Chair, and Megan Smith, from site IHC, is Vice Chair. They will be adding SIG call dates to the SUG Inc. calendar very soon! If you are interested in joining the Cerner SIG and you are already a member of SUG Inc., sign up to receive notifications about the Cerner SIG with these easy steps:
What is SUG Inc.
The Sunquest User Group (SUG Inc.) is one of the strongest and most influential software user groups in healthcare today! It is unique in that we enjoy a very close and direct partnership with the folks at Sunquest Information Systems, to help drive and influence the software and product development teams to create better solutions for their organizations. The dedication and commitment of the SUG Inc. members and Sunquest ensures that we offer the best and safest healthcare solutions to our patients.
Did you know that laboratory data accounts for an estimated 70-80% of clinical decisions? So, why are treatment plans often disease specific and delivered as a “one size fits all” application?
Personalized medicine is the future
Sunquest sees molecular and genetic testing results as game changers for patient care. Our goal is a personalized approach to patient care. Treatment plans should be based on a patient’s individual genetic profile. Think about it: knowledge gained about a patient’s genetic makeup will eventually drive clinical decision making for pharmacy, cancer care and infectious disease treatment—in addition to many other applications in healthcare.
The Challenge of Information Management with Next Generation Sequencing
Everyone is thinking about the challenges right now because tests are becoming more and more complex. I think informatics infrastructure is critically important. Since most of the higher-complexity tests are next generation sequencing (NGS)-based and usually generate large amounts of sequence data across many genes, it’s really important that the process be as automated as possible. From data generation through the pipeline, even up to the point where you’ve identified a variant and are confirming the findings – a good informatics infrastructure can streamline the process so that you don’t need to sift unnecessarily through large amounts of data.