We’ve had many customers express their desire to upgrade or change their current LIS. Ultimately, most delay doing so, despite the fact that long-term gains from such an upgrade could be tremendous. Why the great reluctance?

There many reasons, but they seem to fall into two major categories. The first category is psychological and the second is workflow. On the psychological side, it’s human nature to be apprehensive about change, especially when confronting the many unknowns involved with a new LIS. The magnitude of change can seem overwhelming. There are technical aspects like conversions and interfaces as well as staff impacts like training and ramp up time. Needless to say, it’s not turnkey.

On the workflow side, questions surround the time it takes to get back to normal routines and workflows, and when the upgrade ROI will kick in.

The answers aren’t easy to provide. For example, it could take quite a while to get back to the same settled, productive, efficient pace of operations. It depends on how efficiently the organization takes advantage of the upsides of the change.

The first step is overcoming the fear of the unknown. Only then can you begin to gather the answers that will help you determine the best path forward.

C4 knows that making an LIS change is not easy. It can take 12 to 18 months and it can be rough, but it does get better each month when a lab maintains tight accountability working closely with their vendor on refinements. Those involved should be prepared for challenges. But determining what is possible is surprisingly easy. Virtually every LIS vendor will provide demos for free. C4 recommends taking advantage of them as they provide insights into possible ways to proceed. The only cost of learning is the time spent.

Keep in mind, in this process the billing side does not need to change simultaneously. This allows specific focus on the LIS side of things. A stepped approach is more judicious. First change LIS, then billing. We recommend not changing all at once. As a matter of fact, C4 customers don’t need to change their billing systems.