VUMC Lab Tests Expert Guide & Data Repository

VUMC Lab Tests Expert Guide & Data Repository

Lab Vials


Based on our reputation for extracting and connecting knowledge artifacts from disparate resources across the Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) enterprise to facilitate validation and reuse, the Center for Knowledge Management (CKM) was approached by medical center leadership to create a solution for extracting and consolidating laboratory data from many sources into one knowledge base to allow for determination of and access to a single source of truth for laboratory testing at VUMC.

In response to this charge, CKM is currently working to develop a multi-faceted web-based application to create and maintain metadata, document local practice, and provide evidence for all laboratory tests ordered at VUMC. The goal is to reduce unnecessary laboratory testing and improve clinical decision-making throughout the region by providing an evidence-based, context-rich, and comprehensive knowledge management solution for managing information about laboratory testing at VUMC. By exposing laboratory data and documenting evidence surrounding interpretation or utility of a test, this effort will enable stakeholders not only to more fully visualize VUMC’s current laboratory tests and processes but also to identify areas for future improvements and cost savings.

Specific goals of the project are to:

  • Store and manage both local and global metadata within an externalized database, leveraging multiple data sources to give a holistic view of each laboratory test
  • Document local practice decisions and provide evidentiary support from the biomedical literature, and make this knowledge transparent to the end-user
  • Identify and document linkages with CKM-generated metadata for clinical decision support rules and order sets, as part of a broader effort to externalize and connect the knowledge embedded in VUMC’s clinical systems and practices
  • Develop a user-friendly, web-based portal with an intuitive layout and cross-functional search for appropriate information access and navigation
  • Make data available for export and integration into point-of-care applications
  • Establish scalable solutions for ongoing maintenance


    Related projects


    • Health IT Leadership
    • Dario Giuse, Dr Ing, Associate Professor, Biomedical Informatics
    • Mary M. Zutter, MD, Vice President for Integrative Diagnostics; Professor, Pathology, Microbiology, and Immunology
    • William W. Stead, MD, Chief Strategy Information Officer; Professor, Biomedical Informatics
    • Megan Youngblood, MBA, Director, Strategic Programs
    • Strategic and Operations Analytics team
    • VUMC Laboratory Formulary Committee
    • Lab Systems Product Group