PSA Letter to SA Pathology Following Staff Survey

10 July 2018

The PSA has written to SA Pathology today with a summary of the issues presented by staff in the recent PSA SA Pathology Staff Survey. The PSA requested that SA Pathology respond to the letter with a commitment to action that would return the service provided by SA Pathology to the levels that existed prior to the rollout of Millenium.

A copy of the letter to SA Pathology can be found here.

Members identified that SA Pathology needs to take the following urgent action:

  •     immediately take steps to further increase Data Order Entry staff
  •     create an effective DOE supervision, structure and mentoring system so as to cope with the workload and avoid errors
  •     sufficient staff be employed to enable secondary checks to be reinstated
  •     immediately allocate significant resources to the development of Millenium in order to:
    •         minimise number of key-strokes and changes between screens
    •         increase incidence of auto fill to avoid repeat entries
    •         highlight error messages
    •         remove US-centric jargon (SSN-social security number, alias for doctor provider number)
    •         communicate with staff to discover inefficiencies and possible solutions
    •         create an effective forum for staff to share discovered efficient work flows
  •     immediately take steps to increase laboratory staff so that:
    •         reasonable leave can be approved so as to enable effective recovery time
    •         managers can perform their quality framework requirements
  •     ensure that all local managers are understanding and supportive of staff
    •         eradicate demands for speed over accuracy
    •         acknowledge and appreciate how far staff have compromised their personal lives to keep the service workable (to a degree)
    •         support timely reclassification applications
  •     audit staff training requirements, and
  •     provide training that staff perceive to be relevant and supportive.


In addition, the PSA requested that SA Pathology provides the PSA with the list of work that SA Pathology has prioritised in the process of resolving the current situation, and that this be updated with a progress report and revised list on a fortnightly basis.

SA Pathology were given seven days to commit to action. The PSA offered to meet with SA Pathology to negotiate suitable pathways forward.