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The stat test turnaround time (TAT) outlier rate, expressed as a percentage of tests missing target reporting times, is a measure of outcomes that evaluates how well the laboratory meets patient and clinician needs. This monitor helps meet CAP Laboratory Accreditation Program Checklist statement GEN.20316: “The QM program includes monitoring key indicators of quality in the preanalytic, analytic, and postanalytic phases.”


Monitor the frequency that stat test TAT intervals exceed institutional stat test TAT expectations.

Data Collection

Before beginning data collection, participants will establish a specimen receipt-to-report deadline for emergency department (ED) stat potassium tests. On six predetermined days per month, participants will monitor the TAT of up to 10 randomly selected ED stat potassium tests on each of three, eight-hour shifts (up to 180 tests per month) and track the number of ED stat potassium results reported later than the established reporting deadline. This monitor includes stat potassium tests ordered as part of a panel and excludes stat potassium levels that are requested on body fluids other than blood, as part of timed or protocol studies, or after the specimen arrives in the laboratory.

Performance Indicator

  • Stat test TAT outlier rate (%)

Performance Breakdowns

  • Breakdown of outliers by shift (%)
  • Breakdown of outliers by day of week (%)

Shipping Schedule

  • Shipment A: December 4, 2023
  • Shipment B: March 11, 2024
  • Shipment C: June 10, 2024
  • Shipment D: September 9, 2024

Additional Information

Participants in this program receive:

  • User Guide
  • Templates and instructions for data collection
  • Quarterly reports that include fingerprint clusters, customer-defined groups, and all institution comparisons
  • Peer directory

Quality Management Tools activities meet the American Board of Pathology MOC Part IV Practice Performance Assessment requirements.


For Comprehensive Collection of Tools, see Quality Management Tools.

Select Q-PROBES and Q-TRACKS studies to support your quality improvement initiatives.
Anatomic Pathology
Clinical Pathology
Turnaround Time
Patient Safety
Transfusion Medicine
Chemistry/ Hematology
Customer Satisfaction
Non-Physician Care Team Satisfaction With Clinical Laboratory Services (QP231)
Technical Competency Assessment of Body Fluid Review (QPB10)
Technical Competency Assessment of Peripheral Blood Smears (QPC10/QPC25)
Technical Competency Assessment of Gram Stains (QPD10/QPD25)
Patient Identification Accuracy (QT1)
Blood Culture Contamination (QT2)
Laboratory Specimen Acceptability (QT3)
In-Date Blood Product Wastage (QT4)
Gynecologic Cytology Outcomes: Biopsy Correlation Performance (QT5)
Satisfaction with Outpatient Specimen Collection (QT7)
Stat Test Turnaround Time Outliers (QT8)
Critical Values Reporting (QT10)
Troponin Turnaround Times (QT15)
Corrected Results (QT16)
Outpatient Order Entry Errors (QT17)

*The CAP requires accredited laboratories to have a quality management plan that covers all areas of the laboratory and includes benchmarking key measures of laboratory performance (GEN.13806, GEN.20316, COM.04000). The Joint Commission requires accredited hospitals to regularly collect and analyze performance data (PI.01.01.01, PI.02.01.01). CLIA requires laboratories to monitor, assess, and correct problems identified in preanalytic, analytic, and postanalytic systems (§493.1249, §493.1289, §493.1299).