Date: 1/13/2010

College of American Pathologists awards system accreditation to Community Healthcare laboratories

The Commission on Laboratory Accreditation of the College of American Pathologists (CAP) has awarded the laboratories of Community Healthcare System with a system-wide accreditation.

Community Healthcare System’s facilities are part of some 6,800 laboratories that have received CAP-accreditation nationwide. However, there are only about 100 integrated system laboratories across the United States that have earned CAP-accreditation.

Hospital laboratories included in the review process for Community Healthcare System are Community Hospital in Munster; St. Catherine Hospital in East Chicago; and St. Mary Medical Center in Hobart. The outpatient centers served by these hospitals were also included in this accreditation.

“We’re proud to be recognized nationally for our laboratory services, which have a significant impact on our patients’ experience and the quality of their care,” said John Gorski, Chief Operating Officer of Community Healthcare System. “We strive to maintain the same high quality results from one lab site to the next, so that every patient receives the best care possible — each and every visit. Attaining this distinctive system-wide accreditation is a reflection of that commitment to quality care.”

During the summary presentation, CAP team leader William Manion, M.D., PhD, congratulated Community Healthcare System administrators, physicians and staff on the national recognition and noted several areas of excellence. The laboratories received praise for being well-organized with highly sophisticated and standardized automation, and, a high level of integration which may be attributed to well-trained staff and superior management oversight.

“Congratulations on a job well done; for your professionalism and positive attitude; exemplary system-wide quality management program and strong team effort,” Manion said.

The CAP Laboratory Accreditation Program, begun in the early 1960s, is recognized by the federal government as being equal to or more stringent than the government’s own inspection program.

During the unannounced CAP accreditation process, inspectors examine the laboratory’s records and quality control of procedures for the preceding two years. CAP inspectors also examine the entire staff’s qualifications, the laboratory’s equipment, facilities, safety program and record, as well as overall laboratory management. This stringent inspection program has been designed to ensure the highest standards of care for laboratory patients.

The College of American Pathologists is a medical society serving nearly 16,000 physician members and the laboratory community throughout the world. It is the world’s largest association composed exclusively of pathologists and is widely considered the leader in laboratory quality assurance. CAP is an advocate for high-quality and cost-effective medical care.