Yes, you read it right. I am talking about the all-too-common rodent variety of chipmunk. Chipmunks are a vegetable and fruit gardener’s worst enemy. They secretly watch youas you watch your produce ripen. Just as you decide you are going to pick your crop within the next couple days, they sneak out into your garden at night and have their fill. My vegetable garden is big enough to share, but the berries are another story. They are precious few! When chipmunks ate all my strawberries and blueberries for two consecutive years, I declared war!
After doing some research, I discovered that there are lots of inventive ways to get rid of chipmunks:
- Poison – Discarded this idea because I was afraid I would accidentally kill my dog.
- Drowning – Fill a bucket with a few inches of water and sprinkle some pumpkin seeds on the surface, but then you have to fish out drowned chipmunks every morning. Disgusting!
- Get a cat (or two or three) and let them do their thing – You know from my other blog (What Do Cats and Clinical Laboratories Have in Common?) that I decided on this option, and it works like a charm. It’s the safest and lowest maintenance way of getting rid of these nasty pests.
So, what’s all this about chipmunks? Well, we all have metaphorical chipmunks:those pesky things in our lives that that eat away at us or somehow destroy the fruits of our labor. One of the most common pests in clinical laboratories today is hospital-wide benchmarking. You know the reports I’m talking about:the reports that treat all labs equally, that are not able to adjust for test mix, that penalize laboratories with vibrant outreach programs, that tell you that you have to eliminate 20 FTEs.
So how do you get rid of these benchmarking chipmunks? No poisoning or drowning please! Call in the “cool cats from Chi.” We will help you benchmark your laboratory accurately:
- We normalize peers for test complexity.
- We make sure that you are compared to like outreach programs.
- We will not give you a crazy number of FTEs to reduce; we give you information that is accessible, accurate, and actionable.
When you’ve been beating your head against a wall battling erroneous conclusions, it feels soooooo good to finally stop! You will thrive and finally get to reap the fruits of your labor:discovery, satisfaction, joy, and peace that comes from knowing that your efforts are being recognized. Good hunting!J
Kathleen A. Murphy, PhD
Chief Executive Officer
Chi Solutions Inc.