CEO Ramon Benet guides Instrumentation Laboratory in the development of innovative Hemostasis and Critical Care solutions

Oct. 18, 2013

Ramon Benet



I joined Instrumentation Laboratory (IL) in 1993 as VP of the Critical Care business unit. Subsequently, I managed North American Sales, our two business units—Critical Care and Hemostasis—and Worldwide Marketing and Service. In 2011, I was appointed CEO.


I hold a law degree from the University of Barcelona and an MBA from IESE, University of Navarra, Spain.


While I do a fair amount of international business travel, I still love to travel
on my vacations. Scuba diving is a favorite activity of mine, if I am near warm, tropical waters. I also enjoy reading books related to science and history.

What are IL’s primary areas of expertise? IL was founded in 1959, which means we have one of the longest histories in clinical diagnostics. Most laboratory professionals have used an IL instrument at some point in their career. In fact, in 2005, MLO selected two IL instruments among the top ten innovations that changed the clinical laboratory—and we were the only company with more than one instrument on the list. Today our areas of focus are Critical Care and Hemostasis testing. 

Passion and results characterize the IL organization. We are extremely passionate about what we do, and we understand that at the end of every blood test is a patient whose life could depend upon the quality of that result. We are very proud of the contribution we make to the quality of global healthcare and laboratory medicine. 

What markets does IL primarily serve? IL is engaged in two primary business areas within in vitro diagnostics: Hemostasis and Critical Care. We develop, manufacture, and sell complete analytical systems, including instruments, reagents, consumables, services, and information management products. Our customers include laboratory managers, medical technologists, hematologists, respiratory therapists, point-of-care coordinators, perfusionists, intensivists, neonatologists, nurses, and other healthcare providers.

Point-of-Care testing carries with it some specific challenges. How does IL address these issues for its clients? Laboratory managers are often concerned about maintaining lab-quality testing at the point of care. Additionally, they realize that healthcare providers are extremely busy and unable to focus on quality control, regulatory compliance, and documentation. They need point-of-care systems that provide lab-quality results and automatically manage all requirements. 

Our Critical Care product line is ideal for point-of-care testing. The heart of our system features three components: 1) the GEM Premier 4000 analyzer; 2) iQM (Intelligent Quality Management); and 3) GEMweb Plus Custom Connectivity. Together, they help assure lab-quality results anywhere in the hospital. They automate the most labor- and skill-intensive tasks, including quality management, system maintenance, regulatory compliance, and information management.

Can you speak about innovations in the Hemostasis area that your company provides? IL provides a truly standardized solution for Hemostasis testing with a complete and comprehensive line of instruments, reagents, and services. Our flagship system is the ACL TOP Family, consisting of ACL TOP 700/700 CTS/ 700 LAS, ACL TOP 500 CTS, and ACL TOP 300 CTS analyzers. These systems are designed to meet the needs of large, complex, Hemostasis labs, as well as small routine labs. Each model features identical: software, user interface, HemosIL reagents, and consumables, resulting in standardization of test results and operator training. This makes the ACL TOP Family ideal for hospital or laboratory networks, or simply for any lab requiring a smaller back-up instrument. 

In addition, IL recently launched the ACL AcuStar, the first chemiluminescent immunoassay analyzer delivering full automation and standardization to specialty Hemostasis testing that, until now, has required time-consuming manual processes

What are some of the most important Critical Care solutions
developed by IL?
Critical Care diagnostics, which at IL includes whole blood testing of blood gas, electrolytes, metabolites, and CO-oximetry, is extremely vital to the quality of patient care in the immediate care areas of the hospital, where analyzers are frequently placed at the point of care. Our most significant innovation in Critical Care diagnostics is Intelligent Quality Management (iQM), an automated, real-time quality management system, featured on both of our GEM Premier 3500 and GEM Premier 4000 analyzers. iQM is focused on enhancing patient safety, while at the same time assuring regulatory compliance throughout the hospital. iQM automatically runs and documents the QC process, in addition to other advanced functions. For instance, if an error or the probability of an error is detected by iQM, the system automatically corrects and documents it. 

Another significant innovation developed by IL is GEMweb Plus Custom Connectivity. This information-management system offers hospitals a customizable solution, ensuring regulatory compliance and total remote instrument management. POC coordinators have complete and immediate access to all patient, operator, and quality data at the click of a button. All connected analyzers can be managed remotely from any analyzer or networked computer. GEMweb Plus greatly improves efficiency and helps ensure quality patient care. 

You have said that “product features that may have been considered ‘nice to have’ a few years ago, today have become ‘must have.’” Can you give an example? Until recently, most laboratories operated independently and made purchasing decisions based on their own needs, and buying a stand-alone analyzer was common. Today, the majority of laboratories are closely linked to other laboratories as part of a network of hospitals, and most of them are members of a group purchasing organization (GPO). Patients move within the network; technologists move within the network; information moves within the network. Thus, it is now imperative that laboratories and GPOs not select individual analyzers, but rather, a complete system—a family of analyzers and reagents to standardize the processes throughout the network, with an identical user interface and producing identical test results—from the high-end Hemostasis specialty lab to the small routine lab. 

This is exactly what the ACL TOP Family of analyzers and HemosIL reagents deliver: a single system, a standardized platform customizable to each laboratory, while maintaining standardization and commonality of results throughout the network.

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