The clinical microbiology laboratory provides diagnostic services for all seven hospitals in the Houston Methodist System. We also offer reference laboratory services to outside institutions. The microbiology laboratory performs routine aerobic and anaerobic cultures, blood cultures, acid fast bacteria and fungal cultures, and parasitology using conventional methods. Viruses are detected using molecular techniques. The microbiology laboratory operates 24/7 and is staffed by ~55 medical technologists and clinical laboratory scientists and four medical directors. On average, we perform more than 50,000 tests per month.
Our laboratory is highly innovative and has implemented many new technologies to provide the very best patient care possible. Importantly, rapid testing reduces turnaround times, which in turn, reduces length of stay and mortality. We were leaders in the validation of MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry for routine clinical use. We have also recently implemented several highly multiplexed PCR based tests to rapidly identify the cause of respiratory, gastrointestinal, cerebrospinal, and bloodstream infections. Collaborations with the Department of Pharmacy, Antimicrobial Stewardship Program, Infection Control Program, and Infectious Diseases physicians have led to many improvements in patient care.
For questions or more information, please contact:
S. Wesley Long, MD, PhD
Medical Director, Clinical Microbiology
Randall J. Olsen, MD, PhD
Co-Director, Clinical Microbiology