AUSTRALIAN Clinical Laboratory's pathology unit in Stawell will cease operation from January 24.
After January 24, blood which will be need to be tested on site will be done with a device - the Point of Care model.
After the announcement in September, Stawell Regional Health called for tenders for pathology services.
"We made a genuine attempt to find a provider who would service the Stawell laboratory. Unfortunately, all tender responses have limited their offer to a Point of Care model," Stawell Regional Health's chief executive Kate Pryde said.
'We are very disappointed. The Point of Care model is not our preferred option, but it is the only one available to us at this stage.
"We understand that private pathology services across the state are reviewing their services and closing the smaller, regional based labs in favour of a point of care model."
A Point of Care model is where a series of machines are used to run blood tests through on site.
"It's like a blood sugar machine,"
"We're going to have a series of machines which will have the same capabilities, similar to a blood glucometer - it gives you a result right in the moment.
"What is interesting is there are ones that can tell us specifically about the heart.
"If someone is having a suspected heart attack comes in we can test them straight away and it will tell us what the reading is."
Ms Pryde said the machines would be used for many common blood tests performed during urgent care.
"It means we can perform those tests right on the spot," she said.
"Stawell Regional Health has used Point of Care machines out of hours for some time now.
"It's quite a common model. With this change we'll be expanding that Point of Care service."
Stawell Regional Health has invited Stawell residents to a forum to discuss the changes to pathology services in Stawell at the Stawell Regional Health Education Centre.
The forum will take place on December 19, at 3.30pm.
"Most community members will not be affected," Ms Pryde said.
"The pathology service is not closing and blood collection services will continue unchanged at the Stawell Hospital location.
"We are negotiating with a Point of Care provider to ensure the impact of the altered service model is minimised.
"Many facilities across the state have successfully utilised Point of Care testing and it is now up to us to continue our commitment to providing the best possible care across all of our services.
"I would also like to acknowledge the outstanding commitment and service offered by the laboratory team over many years."
Australian Clinical Laboratory provided a written response to the Stawell Times-News.
"Three staff are impacted and we are currently undertaking a consultation process with each of the impacted staff members," it read.
"We understand this is a challenging time for each of the affected staff and we are providing a range of counselling and outplacement support services."
The Stawell Times-News also asked the following questions;
If awarded the Point of Care model tender proposed, what type of testing can be done on-site under this model?
Does the model impact emergency bloody supply?
Does the model impact the turn around time for blood results for both urgent and non-urgent bloods?
Will any other testing be impacted or not covered under the Point of Care model, such as snake bites, fertility testing etc?
Will a Point of Care model impact the Horsham branch of Australian Clinical Laboratory?
Australian Clinical Laboratory responded that they were are unable to provide comment at this time until the tender process has been finalised.
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