New system will deliver faster diagnosis


Health Minister John Day at Pathwest with Logan Bayley and his
mother Klair and chief pathologist Dominic Mallon.
Health Minister John Day at Pathwest with Logan Bayley and his mother Klair and chief pathologist Dominic Mallon.

A NEW Laboratory Information System (LIS) for the state’s pathology provider, promising patients faster diagnosis, was announced in Nedlands last week.

Health Minister John Day said $47 million funding for the LIS – the first of its kind in Australia – would provide a boost for PathWest’s statewide network to meet the rising demand for pathology testing.

“This is an investment in the future of pathology and medicine in WA,” he said.

“The system has been proven at major North American institutions such as the Mayo Clinic and will streamline testing, tracking, analysis and research and keep WA at the forefront, especially in the field of genetics.

“It will also have positive spin-offs for our nation-leading Undiagnosed Diseases Program, launched early last year.”

The LIS will integrate all areas of diagnostic testing, including microbiology and toxicology testing, promising benefits for all of WA Health’s hospitals and facilities that are served by PathWest, as well as the Coroner, police and commercial clients, through more accurate specimen tracking and quicker turnarounds of diagnostic results.

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Mr Day met 15-year-old Logan Bayley, who was diagnosed with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, a rare condition that was confirmed by genetic testing when he was four.

Logan’s mother Klair said the LIS would help families on the “diagnostic odyssey”.

“It can take a long time for doctors to find out what is wrong with a child.

It can take years, and some never get a diagnosis.

“This system speeds up the process. It helps pick up information from the genes and shares data.”

Ms Bayley is the executive Officer of Save our Sons Duchenne Australia, a registered charity that provides support for families who have a member with DMD and raises money to support DMD research.