To ensure patients maintain confidence in the service and results being provided, EuroGentest, an EU-funded Network of Excellence is promoting the increased uptake and harmonisation of quality management schemes across Europe through a range of activities, including expert - workshops. The first providing practical hands on advice about how to successfully gain and maintain accreditation and open to all genetic testing laboratories was held recently in Leuven.
Organised by Prof Els Dequeker from Leuven, Dr Michael Morris from Geneva, Management Cousulting and Research (MCR), a spin-off from the Catholic University of Leuven and the Unit 1 team, the workshop featured expert-led interactive sessions in small groups. Discussions covered every aspect on quality management and accreditation: ISO and related national standards, document management, non-conformities, auditing, training and IT support. Both organisers and most importantly participants judged the workshop a great success and a second workshop will be held 12th-13th April in Athens.
Participants included lab directors, scientists, technicians and quality managers from both already accredited and non-accredited laboratories across Europe. Typical of accredited participants were Victoria Aldridge and Tony Young from the Regional Molecular Genetics Laboratory in London’s famous Great Ormond Street Hospital which along with Clinical Genetics and Cytogenetics, forms a strategic Genetics Unit and also constitutes the North East Thames Regional Genetics Service that serves a population of approximately 5 million. They explained their reasons for attending: “The laboratory achieved accreditation with Clinical Pathology Accreditation (UK) Ltd in July 2003 and we are currently working towards accreditation review later next year. Accreditation status has become an important part of any laboratory within the UK, particularly in reference to receiving samples from other centres as part of the UK genetic testing network. We found the workshop very enjoyable and worthwhile. Although we had a good idea of the elements of a quality system, the workshop highlighted areas in which we could improve and gave a good overview of all aspects of Quality Management, not just document control. We found the group discussion sessions very worthwhile and it was interesting to hear other peoples views on, amongst other things, laboratory practice and reporting procedures. We would definitely recommend the workshop, particularly to laboratories that are yet to start the accreditation process, as a lot of useful and pragmatic information could be gained before undertaking such a process. Additionally, although we have been accredited for a few years ourselves we still gained knowledge and some useful ideas on how we could improve our current system.”
Kadri Raudsepp from Tartu University Clinics, a leading center for hospitals in Estonia, represented the non-accredited sector: ”I am responsible for one small lab in the Department of Immunoanalyses , called simply the PCR lab,since we are dealing with many different analyses: qualitative and quantitative analyses of HIV, hepatitis viruses, CMV, EBV; HLA typing; leukemic chromosomal translocations etc. As to the question why accredit at all, I would answer perhaps to be competitive in the market, but first of all to ensure yourself that everything is working properly and our results are credible. Many of our departments are already accredited, in our department some groups of tests have been accredited. My lab started quite recently implementing a quality system. Perhaps next year we are going to apply accreditation from the Estonian Accreditation Board for our laboratory as a whole, but for HLA typing we have to apply accreditation from EFI, because our clinic is collaborating with Nordic Stem Cell Bank and they do not accept our HLA results without EFI accreditation. I enjoyed the workshop very much, because I have dealt with quality management for a very short time and during the workshop I received a general overview of it, which I did not have before. When we started our quality system I (and technicians even more) were quite resistant against it, because it just seemed to be boring paperwork and we felt that it impedes our everyday work. Nobody gave us the whole picture or explained to us the aim and purpose of the process. In the workshop we also worked through all the stages of implementing QSM and I got a lot of advice and hints. I also got valuable information about software systems for quality management. I will definitely recommend the EuroGentest workshops to others. First I thought that those labs, who are still moving towards accreditation gained more, but later I realized that there is still much to improve and develop for those labs, who have already been accredited for a long time. I was surprised that so many lab managers seemed to be afraid of computers and new software. Estonians are very keen on computers - most of the public services are available via the internet and we always want the most up-to-date instruments.”
Professor Els Dequeker and Dr Michael Morris were both satisfied with the workshop: “We were delighted with the enthusiasm of the participants and the way in which they took on board the quality message. We now look forward to Athens and the next workshops.”
Richard Hayhurst | alfa
Study tracks inner workings of the brain with new biosensor
16.08.2018 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
Foods of the future
15.08.2018 | Georg-August-Universität Göttingen
There are currently great hopes for solid-state batteries. They contain no liquid parts that could leak or catch fire. For this reason, they do not require cooling and are considered to be much safer, more reliable, and longer lasting than traditional lithium-ion batteries. Jülich scientists have now introduced a new concept that allows currents up to ten times greater during charging and discharging than previously described in the literature. The improvement was achieved by a “clever” choice of materials with a focus on consistently good compatibility. All components were made from phosphate compounds, which are well matched both chemically and mechanically.
The low current is considered one of the biggest hurdles in the development of solid-state batteries. It is the reason why the batteries take a relatively long...
New design tool automatically creates nanostructure 3D-print templates for user-given colors
Scientists present work at prestigious SIGGRAPH conference
Most of the objects we see are colored by pigments, but using pigments has disadvantages: such colors can fade, industrial pigments are often toxic, and...
Scientists at the University of California, Los Angeles present new research on a curious cosmic phenomenon known as "whistlers" -- very low frequency packets...
Scientists develop first tool to use machine learning methods to compute flow around interactively designable 3D objects. Tool will be presented at this year’s prestigious SIGGRAPH conference.
When engineers or designers want to test the aerodynamic properties of the newly designed shape of a car, airplane, or other object, they would normally model...
Researchers from TU Graz and their industry partners have unveiled a world first: the prototype of a robot-controlled, high-speed combined charging system (CCS) for electric vehicles that enables series charging of cars in various parking positions.
Global demand for electric vehicles is forecast to rise sharply: by 2025, the number of new vehicle registrations is expected to reach 25 million per year....
17.08.2018 | Event News
08.08.2018 | Event News
27.07.2018 | Event News
20.08.2018 | Information Technology
20.08.2018 | Life Sciences
20.08.2018 | Information Technology