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Managing the Transition to Next-generation Sequencing

Dr. Ģirts Šķenders and Mr. Reinis Zeltmatis shed light on how the COVID-19 pandemic brought significant changes to their hospital laboratory. Upgrading it in the midst of a global pandemic wasn’t ideal but a combination of shared insights and the right instruments helped open the door to success.

To develop more agile digital laboratories, QC leaders whose systems have become disconnected will need to reimagine an approach that advances a connected quality ecosystem. This requires thinking beyond specific tools and problems to consider a holistic approach to modernising QC and how it will fit within the organisation’s overall technology modernisation efforts.

The lab at Riga East Clinical University Hospital provides clinical reporting of infectious diseases, pathology and oncology patient samples. However, for Dr Ģirts Šķenders, the laboratory’s Development Project Manager, and Laboratory Specialist Reinis Zeltmatis, things became a lot more complicated during the pandemic when the facility upgraded from Sanger sequencing-based approaches to next-generation sequencing (NGS). Fortunately, the duo is accustomed to challenges and problems Dr. Ģirts Šķenders and Mr. Reinis Zeltmatis shed light on how the COVID-19 pandemic brought significant changes to their hospital laboratory. Upgrading it in the midst of a global pandemic wasn’t ideal but a combination of shared insights and the right instruments helped open the door to success. solving and were therefore ideally equipped to lead their team through a successful transition to a new workflow.

The laboratory was originally part of the infectious disease department of the city’s University Hospital. This changed when five hospitals were brought together under the umbrella of the Riga East Clinical University Hospital, now the biggest hospital group in Latvia. Included in this consolidation were several independent laboratories focusing on pathology, oncology and infectious disease.