Doctors control up to eighty percent (80%) of laboratory costs through their ordering habits (Clancy 2014). Showing physicians the cost of labs at the time of ordering reduces both the number and expense of lab testing (Seaman 2013). Just doing this for the top 20 labs saved one hospital $400,000 per year (Id).

In addition to financial costs, laboratory testing imposes a physical cost on patients. Investigational blood loss is an important contributing factor in hospital-acquired anemia (Wong 2006). A study of 188,447 hospitalizations found that 74% of patients developed hospital-acquired anemia. This increased length of stay by 1.02-1.88 days and was associated with increased mortality (Koch 2013).

The IllumiCare Lab Smart Ribbon provides clinicians with a high-level view of the financial and clinical impact of lab orders. We never tell the provider not to order another test. We just provide them with the context they need to make a proper judgment about whether the utility of that next test is worth the cost and patient risk.

Labs ordered in the current admission are sorted by cost per test, with the most recent test date noted.
For some labs, the test sensitivity and other factors dictate a recommended delay between multiple orders for the same test. The Lab Smart Ribbon indicates when a test is within its recommended interval period.
Illumicare uses a patent-pending method for estimating phlebotomy blood loss (ml) by day of length of stay. This reinforces that labs have both a human and economic cost.
We provide clinicians with a probability of hospital-acquired anemia associated with phlebotomy blood loss. Blood transfusions are expensive for the hospital and potentially problematic for patients.
Through our collaboration with ARUP Laboratories, we make available a physician’s guide to over 2,000 lab tests. IllumiCare and ARUP together recognize that behind each lab test is a patient that may experience discomfort and a risk of harm. This collaboration seeks to ensure that patients receive the right test at the right time.


Speak with a Decision Transparency specialist. We’d love to tell you about how it works, how it is implemented or how much it costs.

(205) 578-1738