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April 1975

To the Editor.—

Arch Intern Med. 1975;135(4):623. doi:10.1001/archinte.1975.00330040135026

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The editorial by John Laszlo, MD (133:1068, 1974) concerning multiphasic chemistries seems to indicate that Dr. Laszlo is suffering from profound "future shock." The "abdication of responsibility for the hospital laboratories" was a natural evolutionary accompaniment of technological advances. Most clinically oriented physicians found themselves unable to sacrifice the large amount of time and energy required to produce comparably reliable, precise, inexpensive, rapid results in their fragmented subspecialty laboratories, and hence willingly relegated this task to a laboratory specialist, the clinical pathologist, who, I must point out, is a physician first and foremost.

The rapidly growing number of diagnostic tools available to the physician in even a small community hospital, thanks to automation, was not available 15 or 20 years ago. It is primarily because of expanding technology and an increase in the number of laboratory scientists that this change has occurred.

Granted, automated testing equipment is expensive, but

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