The Ringgold County Hospital laboratory operates under the highest of standards to test clinical specimens and provide practitioners with the means to diagnose, treat and prevent disease. Our team of qualified professionals provide constant coverage day and night. The laboratory offers a complete spectrum of tests using up-to-date analytical equipment. Most tests are completed at Ringgold County Hospital—an outside laboratory handles those that are not. The laboratory also performs EKGs and is responsible for Holter monitor and cardiac monitor hook-ups. Computer technology is used to monitor tests and report results to ensure consistency. We have an ongoing quality assurance program and are licensed by the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendment.
In-House Lab Tests
The laboratory offers a comprehensive range of testing capabilities, using state-of-the-art analytical equipment. Most lab tests are completed right here inside Ringgold County Hospital. We also contract with an outside lab to help with overflow and other testing needs, so that patients always have access to efficient and accurate testing. Our team of highly qualified professionals provide constant coverage in the lab, day and night, 7 days a week.
The types of tests and other lab services we perform in-house include:
- Blood chemistry profiles and testing
- COVID-19 testing prior to surgery
- Serology testing, which looks for antibodies in the blood
- Hematology testing
- Coagulation analysis
- Immunohematology for potential transfusion patients
- Collection of samples for a reference laboratory
EKGs, Holter & Cardiac Event Monitors
The Ringgold County Hospital laboratory also performs EKGs and is responsible for Holter monitor and cardiac event monitor hook-ups. Computer technology is used to collect and report test results to ensure consistency.
OXYGEN & RESPIRATORY THERAPY
RCH respiratory therapists can help with setup, management, and removal of various forms of respiratory devices, including ventilators and supplemental oxygen. Our respiratory therapists also administer and provide patient guidance regarding nebulizer treatments (the delivery of medications that are inhaled).
Unlike a Holter monitor, a cardiac event monitor only records the heart’s electrical functioning when abnormal activity is detected. An event monitor is worn outside the body for up to 30 days. This type of testing is helpful when a patient’s symptoms do not occur regularly. The sensors and device can be removed for showering or bathing.
An electrocardiogram (EKG) is a noninvasive and painless test performed to measure the electrical activity of your heart. It can identify how quickly and regularly your heart beats – as well as the strength and timing of your heart’s pumping action.
Symptoms like chest pain and heart palpitations may lead your medical provider to order this test to identify or rule out possible cardiac issues, such as heart arrythmias or coronary artery disease (CAD). An EKG may be used to verify whether certain heart medications or devices (like a pacemaker) are working for you. An EKG may even be able to identify whether you previously had a heart attack.
During an EKG, you will be asked to lay still after small sensors are applied to the skin on chest, arms, and legs. These sensors are connected to a device that records your heart’s activity at rest. The results appear as a graph of waves that can be assessed for abnormalities. The entire test takes under 15 minutes to complete.
You can think of a Holter monitor as a small, portable EKG device. It is worn outside the body, with sensors that attach to your chest. It continuously records the activity of your heart for a period of 1-2 days. A Holter monitor can be especially helpful in identifying how your heartbeat changes throughout the day.
An RCH lab technician will apply a few sensors to your chest – and may need to shave your chest to ensure proper adherence of the sensor – as well as explain how to care for the device over the course of the test. For example, you will be advised not to shower, bathe, or swim during the test period. You will return the device to the RCH lab after the test period, and you should get the test results from your healthcare provider a short time after that.
Quality Assurance & CLIA Certification
The Ringgold County Hospital quality assurance program helps to ensure that the RCH lab continues to operate under the highest standards for quality, including the federal regulations of the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments of 1988 (CLIA). We are a CLIA-certified lab, which ensures that our test results meet or exceed industry standards for clinical laboratory testing.
On-Site Lab Tests in Mount Ayr, IA
Whether you are a patient, physician, or visitor to Ringgold County Hospital in Mount Ayr, Iowa, you can count on the testing and results conducted at our in-house lab. The hospital’s clinical laboratory, which is staffed 24/7, operates under the highest quality standards. If you have any questions about the RCH lab, call us at (641) 464-4411.