We recently contacted Leeds Teaching Hospital NHS Trust to ask them about their purchase of a new Whitley M35 Microaerobic Workstation. A long-standing client, the Trust continues its use of Whitley Workstations, having previously had a Whitley VA500 Workstation.
Liam Burns, Senior Biomedical Scientist at Leeds Teaching Hospitals, told us that they use their Whitley Workstation daily to culture a large volume of clinical patient samples, specifically, Campylobacter; E coli and C jejuni. While the M35 model has the reliability and consistency of previous generations, the new features allow for greater control over accuracy and quality. Specifically, “the airlock is much more convenient than the old ports. We can now move more plates out and into the workstation each time without having to pass them through the ports. Fluctuations in air percentage mix also appear to either not happen or are pretty much unnoticeable. This is likely due to much less gas being lost due to the airlock being flushed each time in comparison to the old door ports which lost far more gas”.
Liam goes on to mention that there has been a notable difference in gas consumption, particularly a reduction in the use of nitrogen and that the lab is enjoying the easy gas concentration change function.
We then asked if the new plate racks in the M35 Workstation had offered any positive benefits to which he replied that they are “particularly useful due to the locking strips [Petri dish holder tags] that can be used to stop plates falling out of the racks”.
When asked if there were any standout features of the workstation, Liam noted that “Data logging is particularly useful as we can use this to spot trends which may help explain any issues with results”.
The minimal maintenance required for the M35 was also mentioned when compared to other cabinets and Whitley Workstations had continued to be reliable.
Lastly, when we asked why Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust chose to continue their long-standing relationship with us, Liam replied that the key benefits of choosing DWS are “great customer service, quick response to issues with equipment and the familiarity we now have at Leeds with the same engineers we have worked with for years. These engineers always seem to be more than happy to go the extra mile to ensure customer satisfaction”.
We would like to thank Liam Burns, Senior Biomedical Scientist at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust for his time in answering our questions for this article.