Integrated EQA Service

Integrated EQA service is a completely new approach to external quality assessment. These new programs integrate pre- and post-analytical EQA schemes to traditional analytical EQA providing full support for ISO 15189 standard requirements.

What is Integrated EQA?

Integrated EQA is a new service for laboratories and point-of-care sites. Integrated EQA combines evaluation of analytical and extra-analytical phases of the laboratory investigation process.

Integrated EQA scheme may include:

  • Pre-analytical cases (written cases, images videos) related to the scope of the scheme to be evaluated
  • Specimens including disturbing agents (haemolysis, lipemia, drugs) to be analyzed
  • Traditional specimens to be analyzed
  • Post-analytical cases related to the scope of the scheme to be evaluated

The selection of cases and samples varies from round to round. Some rounds may include only samples to be analyzed and some rounds pre- and/or post-analytical cases to be evaluated as well.

How does it work?

Integrated EQA schemes have been developed from Labquality’s well-known traditional EQA schemes. We recommend participants register for the annual program (all rounds) to cover all pre-analytical, analytical and post-analytical cases. Case selection in EQA rounds is not announced beforehand.

In an EQA round of Integrated EQA scheme, a participant gets specimens and instructions as usual. Instruction letter guides participants to evaluate possible pre-analytical cases, analyze specimens and evaluate possible post-analytical cases. Participants are guided to report the pre-analytical findings, analyzed results and post-analytical findings to the internet result form (LabScala).

In the EQA evaluation report, participants get statistics of all cases and analyzed samples. Pre- and post-analytical findings are listed but not scored and analyzed results from specimens are compared to target values as usual. Integrated EQA scheme includes always expert comments to provide additional information for the participants.

The EQA Programme 2022 has already 40 Integrated EQA schemes that include pre and/or postanalytical cases. All integrated EQA schemes are marked with the EQA3 label.

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