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    Tomorrow’s Lab

    Consolidation streamlines processes, improves productivity, and reduces costs to keep pace with changing healthcare economics

The power of the molecular lab

Consolidation of microbiology lab testing services saves costs and improves testing efficiencies

With nearly 70% of clinical decisions now being made on the basis of laboratory diagnostic testing, the power of today’s molecular lab has never been stronger.1 To further strengthen this position, microbiology labs can look to consolidation as a means to streamline processes, improve productivity and reduce costs to keep pace with changing healthcare economics.

The consolidation of microbiology lab testing services is a cost-saving strategy that eliminates duplication and improves testing efficiencies.2 Research suggests that the consolidation of lab services can produce significant cost savings without compromising efficiency or quality of service.3

At Roche, efficiency, patient care, and lab staff satisfaction drive the future. Consolidation ushers in an era of change, and Roche is embracing and driving it. The future make-up of molecular labs will mirror that of clinical 


chemistry labs, reflecting an automated, streamlined, and efficient architecture, where quality, speed, and reliability are of the essence. 

Ushering in a new era of change in lab testing services

Healthcare systems may see a co-existence of centralized and decentralized lab services


One suitable solution for effective lab testing services is for microbiology labs to consolidate or form strategic alliances with other labs as a way to reduce costs and improve efficiencies.4

On a broad scale, decentralization has accelerated the proliferation of near-patient testing and a move toward laboratory automation. So much so, that, for microbiology labs to continue to achieve economies of scale, the most logical distribution of lab services will include a combination of centralized and decentralized services. This coordinated co-existence will also improve both the profitability and quality of care across healthcare systems. 

Near-patient testing is known to offer fast and agile, single-answer solutions on demand. In microbiology labs, these tests are important tools for delivering results quickly. However, near-patient testing facilities face challenges, including a shortage of qualified lab technicians,3 quality control inconsistencies, and sample tracking issues when processing a large number of samples. There is also the loss of efficiencies and economies of scale resulting from performing tests one-

by-one. While near-patient testing remains a viable solution for critical and immediate needs, the cobas® 4800 System from Roche gives microbiology labs a flexible solution for processing multiple assays as well as a higher volume of tests.

The need for automation presents a dynamic opportunity

Microbiology labs seeking a diagnostic solution that is scalable and efficient at higher volumes have found that the desire to consolidate has driven the need for automation.5

More than just improving devices, automation facilitates the creation of better systems that allow lab staff to spend their time more efficiently and labs to remain competitive without compromising quality.5 Systems that answer these challenges will help fulfill the original promise of lab automation and become the new standards of automation innovation.6

Roche believes that the need for automation presents a dynamic opportunity — an opportunity to look to integrated and automated solutions that increase efficiency and productivity, and the timely delivery of accurate results to improve patient outcomes.

At the core of Roche innovation is a clear understanding of the critical role the lab and lab staff expertise plays in the clinical decisions that affect patients’ lives. 

The Roche solution: Introducing the cobas® 4800 System

Automated Architecture

Works the way you do

To help microbiology labs gain competitive advantage in today’s rapidly evolving healthcare landscape, Roche provides a powerful solution — the integration of full automation and menu consolidation, promising even greater ease-of-use, enhanced productivity and the highest quality results. It is the Roche difference — single-platform solutions that drive operational and cost efficiencies through superior automation, confidence in results through high-quality Roche assays, and flexibility that comes with a broad and expanding menu on a single platform — the cobas® 4800 System. 

The cobas® 4800 System works the way microbiology labs want to work, while enabling them to keep pace with the changing needs of molecular diagnostic testing. This modular system offers superior automation, requiring minimal human touch points and resulting in maximum walk-away time to allow lab staff to work more efficiently while focusing on other essential tasks that impact patient care.

Offers an expanding test menu 

The cobas® 4800 System is the foundation of the future. Roche is committed to menu consolidation, offering an expanding menu to meet molecular testing needs today and tomorrow. Today, the IVD menu includes HPV, CT/NG, BRAF, KRAS*, EGFR, HSV 1 and 2, Cdiff and MRSA/SA, and can even run laboratory-developed tests on the same system. And tomorrow, HIV**, HBV**, HCV**, HCV GT** will join the list. With so many options available on a single system, and more on the way, the cobas® 4800 System is an investment in the future. A future that can provide a new source of testing revenue and reduce esoteric costs, as well as support other lab programs.   

* Research Use Only in the US
** In development, not available in all markets

Efficient Technology

Ready for today, ready for tomorrow

Roche sees the vast opportunity that platform and menu consolidation brings to labs — reinforcing and expanding upon their absolute value by offering advanced core technologies, and integrating lab information across the continuum of care. 

This need for connectivity is essential. A well-integrated connection to the laboratory information system (LIS) is central to a successfully implemented electronic medical record (EMR).2 In fact, approximately 70% of data stored in an EMR is generated in the lab.2 This, together with other valuable test utilization data and available metrics, will help uncover cost-saving opportunities in areas such as staffing, testing supplies and equipment, quality control/quality assurance, and support services. 


The cobas® 4800 System brings an innovative core technology to the lab, offering powerful automation and seamless integration that labs need to move forward. The system’s easy-to-use software integrates processes and data interpretation analysis to extend its already established list of efficiencies. Its bi-directional LIS easily connects a lab’s current LIS, using barcoded primary vials and automated queries to quickly download desired testing information.

Roche brings economies of scale and integration to the molecular lab of the future, reducing overlap, and allowing resources and staff to be focused fully on patients and making the right diagnosis, to improve treatment efficacy and reduce patient length of stay. We believe that the lab of the future will emerge as a dynamic and essential contributor to patient care everywhere.

At Roche, your needs inspire our innovation. As the laboratory of the future emerges, we will be there with you as a committed partner.


Learn More About the cobas® 4800 System 

  • Acronyms:


1. Howerton D, Anderson N, Bosse D, Granade S, Westbrook G. Good laboratory practices for waived testing sites: survey findings from testing sites holding a certificate of waiver under the clinical laboratory improvement amendments of 1988 and recommendations for promoting quality testing. MMWR. 2005;54(RR13):1-25.

2. Kudler NR, Pantanowitz L. Overview of laboratory data tools available in a single electronic medical record. J Pathol Inform. 2010;1:3. doi:10.4103/2153-3539.63824.

3. Shah H. Consolidation of the microbiology laboratory services: a mini-review of finances and quality of care. LabMedicine. 2013;44:86-89. doi:10.1309/LM9FESITVA22BDOM.

4. Bossuyt X, Verweire K, Blanckaert N. Lab medicine: challenges and opportunities. Clinical Chemistry. 2007;53(10):1730-1733. doi:10.1373/clinchem.2007.093989.

5. Liscouski J. Future directions in laboratory automation technologies. Presented at ELA 2013, June 2013; Hamburg, Germany. Groton, MA: Institute for Laboratory Automation; 2013.

6. Eberhard K. Laboratory automation possibilities give lift to labs. CAP Today. 2014;28(3):12-14.