Unilabs increased productivity by 40 %, with lab automation
– Sclerosis patients get their results sooner
At Unilabs in Copenhagen, blood samples from sclerosis patients from all over the world are being screened for antibodies against a virus, and the results are being used for diagnostic analysis. “Every day we screen a minimum of 470 samples from patients. For this we use the pipetting robot flowbot ONE of which we have five in our laboratory. In a specific pattern, the robots dilute the samples and dispenses them onto microtiterplates. The process for one assessment takes a little less than 30 minutes and we are completing 10-12 assessments every day. It’s an improvement of 40 % more samples screened,” tells Dana Svraka, Medical Laboratory Technologist at Unilabs, Copenhagen.
Being an international company, Unilabs performs diagnostic services in large scale, with more than 120,000 cases of pathology diagnostic services, 3.8 million imaging examinations and 195 million analyses made annually, in more than 250 laboratories spread globally.
“Now, the sclerosis patients get answers 30 % faster than before.”
Unilabs provides diagnostic services to different patient groups. For Unilabs in Copenhagen, the implementation of five flowbot ONE robots in their workflow resulted in significantly shorter turnaround time for incoming patient samples. Dana Svraka is enthusiastic about this efficiency improvement: “Now, the sclerosis patients get answers 30 % faster than before. The time from we start the tests until we can conclude on results has been significantly shortened and it is really satisfying to me. We could not have done this without the flowbots.”
Prior to automating their screening process, they had some concerns regarding training and the general use of pipetting robots. “We were a little concerned about losing the manual know-how of pipetting. But the bottom line is that our lab team still fully controls the pipetting, only now we avoid aching hands and shoulders due to locked work positions and repetitive procedures. This is really important to us.”
“You quickly get started in the morning. A push on the button and it is ready to start running.”
It took little effort for the Laboratory Technologist at Unilabs to become familiar with flowbot ONE. The Danish company Flow Robotics has designed flowbot ONE to be intuitive for new users. “We are really happy with how user-friendly flowbot ONE is. You quickly get started in the morning – a push on the button and it is ready to start running the predefined programs,” describes Dana Svraka, “It’s great that you don’t have to learn a lot of new procedures, it’s simple to use since you can setup programs with a few clicks, and everyone in our lab understood how to right away.”
“We are happy we decided to automate our dilution series with flowbot ONE. We have increased our productivity, reduced injuries and, on a bigger picture, we give the answers of the samples quicker, so that medical staff can provide the right care for the patients sooner,” concludes Dana Svraka, and returns to the lab, where one robot already finished a run and is ready for the next batch of samples.
Read more about the work at Unilabs here.
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