The new IEQAS program initiative looked at the way tests are performed while considering the type and condition of existing laboratory equipment and the availability of reagents. Several laboratories from the Balkans, Africa, and Central Asia took advantage of the virtual sessions. Many participating laboratories reported major improvements to their processes as a result of the virtual troubleshooting sessions. Equipment calibration issues were resolved, and tips were provided for ongoing equipment maintenance. The team also shared protocols on how to perform manual pre-dilutions to attain better results.
We noticed that correspondence alone does not always lead to improvements with the results of some participating laboratories.
—Steve Kitchen, clinical scientist, and Director of the IEQAS program
The initiative has already had an impact: a laboratory from Central Asia said that the support they received allowed them to improve their processes enough to report Grade A (within consensus) results for the tests they were having difficulties with. “We have already learned more about some of the analyzer’s limitations in methods and software,” explained Kitchen. “This will help us give better support to other laboratories. It will also reinforce different aspects of good practice in our own local lab services.”
The WFH and UK NEQAS will continue providing virtual sessions to participating IEQAS laboratories in 2023.
To find out more about the WFH International External Quality Assessment Scheme (IEQAS), please click here.
The International External Quality Assessment Scheme (IEQAS) is supported by Novo Nordisk Haemophilia Foundation