Critical values are potentially life-threatening laboratory results that
must be conveyed immediately to the physician or other healthcare
professional so that therapeutic measures can be instituted rapidly.
Main Line Health Laboratories (MLHL) maintains critical values for
routine laboratory studies, therapeutic drug monitoring, microbiology
testing and blood bank results.
When a critical value is encountered, MLHL automatically repeats the
test in question. Once the critical value is verified, we will report
the value to your office, usually by telephone. If an answering service
is reached, we will inform them that you have a critical laboratory
result, provide the patient's name and request that you contact our
testing facility. If your answering service is authorized to accept
critical values, the result will be left with the service. Communication
of critical values is documented on the patient's laboratory report. If
your office uses an answering machine after the close of business and no
physician can be reached, MLHL will leave critical results on the
answering machine and follow up the next working day.
For more information, call 1.866.CALL.MLH.