Awanui Labs (formerly WSCL) has been issued with strike notices from the APEX union of intended action by its members for December.
There will be a change of service from December 5 – 24, 2023,
The industrial action will impact laboratory services at Wellington Regional Hospital and, to a lesser extent Kenepuru Community Hospital. Hutt Hospital and Wairarapa Hospital are not affected – however, samples sent from those hospitals to the Wellington laboratory may be affected by the industrial action. Our Hutt, Wairarapa and Kenepuru hospital laboratory operations are unaffected by the strike.
- No collection centres are affected
- No change to courier runs.
- Expect delays from the laboratory answering phone calls and emails – please look up laboratory test results in eClair prior to calling the laboratory.
Add-on tests may not be available via e-ordering
Note: you may be required to submit another request if the Add-on cannot be processed, during these periods.
Microbiology and molecular testing
The microbiology and molecular pathology departments will have reduced ability to process urine samples and vaginal swabs. We will be unable to process our usual volumes over this time, so will need to prioritise urgent work, particularly hospital samples. We ask that:
- Requestors avoid sending urine samples for people with typical symptoms of uncomplicated UTI and no contraindications to nitrofurantoin; these people can be treated empirically with nitrofurantoin (see HealthPathways and the ‘diagnostic’ app for further information).
- Requestors avoid sending urine samples for culture in non-pregnant people that don’t have symptoms suggestive of UTI.
- Requestors avoid sending vaginal swabs unless empiric treatment is not appropriate, and results will directly change management.
Please note, depending on staff availability, we may not be able to process all urine samples and vaginal swabs each day, and some may need to be discarded. To aid in prioritising the most important work, samples without a clear indication for testing (i.e. no clinical details on the form) will be discarded and if testing is required, the urine will need to be recollected.
During the strike microbiology samples with no clinical details will not be processed (not tested). Routine samples without an indication of treatment failure may be discarded (not tested) if test volumes exceed staff capacity on these days.