The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Risk Management in the Clinical Laboratory. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Risk Assessment

As defined earlier in the course, a risk is a present condition or activity that could result in harm. In healthcare, a risk is a practice or approach that, unmitigated or unchanged, will more than likely result in harm to a patient or an error that could negatively affect patient outcomes. Risks need to be identified and assessed. Risks should be assessed to determine the probability of occurrence and the severity of the harm that would result, if the event did occur.

Processes in all phases of laboratory testing (preanalytic, analytic, and postanalytic phases) should be scrutinized to identify potential risks.