General Data is a major provider of labeling, bar coding, RFID, automated data collection, and mobility products for pathology and the clinical labs. Ralph Moher, VP of marketing for the company, emailed me recently to let me know that the company has launched a blog. He describes one of the upcoming blog activities in his email:
We are going to be exhibiting at the upcoming National Society for Histotechnololgy Symposium/Conference next week. As part of our efforts, we are going to be blogging from the show - daily posts, pictures, and video interviews, about what's going on at the show - what's new and exciting, what's hot, what is on attendees minds, what is on the minds of the NSH folks.
Here's a list of some of the titles of recent notes posted on this blog:
- IT ADOPTION = HAPPY PATIENTS?
- NEW BARCODE SYMBOLOGIES
- 23 STATES NOW DO NOT PAY FOR "NEVER EVENTS"
- PUTTING A $ NEXT TO MED ERRORS
- COLOR CODING CONSISTENCY
- HEALTHCARE IT A BARRIER?
General Data is certainly to be commended for this corporate blogging initiative. It's one of the only corporate sites that I know of in the clinical lab world. Bio-Rad has an excellent web site called QCNet (see: My Not-So-Secret Life as a Blogger) but it's not a blog. Clearly, the General Data effort will focus on healthcare barcoding and ID issues. No surprise there. And who would have a better understanding of such issues than a company deeply involved in this segment of the market? I am also enthusiastic about live-blogging from pathology-related conferences such as NSH -- it will help both the company and the professional society presenting the conference.
Now comes the interesting question. Can a highly specialized blog such as Ralph's baby attract enough readers to justify the investment. The answer is a resounding yes! Recall the long tail of the web which I have discussed previously (see: The "Long Tail" and the Clinical Lab Industry).There is no niche market or hobby that is too specialized to find an interested audience on the web with its enormous global audience.
Just a couple of friendly suggestions regarding future directions of this blog:
- Histotechnologists are the most under-appreciated employees in pathology (see: Do Histotechnologists Lack Respect?; Additional Discussion About Histotechnologists). I would encourage continuing discussion about issues that concern them and their careers.
- Problems with patient identification are of great interest to a broad swath of healthcare consumers. Continue to focus on such issues and the search engine bots and this particular set of readers will find and support the blog.