NH, Vt. hospitals look to centralize lab services

LEBANON, N.H. (AP) — Several hospitals in New Hampshire and Vermont are exploring the idea of centralizing their lab services.

Mount Ascutney Hospital and Health Center of Windsor, Vt., New London Hospital and Valley Regional Hospital in Claremont have agreed to participate in a pilot project with Dartmouth-Hitchcock's pathology department. Patients will continue to have blood drawn at their local hospital or doctor's office, with test specimens sent to Dartmouth-Hitchcock for processing.

The goal is to improve lab standardization and quality while reducing costs. The three hospitals are all part of the New England Alliance for Health, a group of health care facilities working to increase the quality, efficiency and availability of health care in New Hampshire, Vermont and western Massachusetts.

The lab project is expected to be established by next spring.

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