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Below we have complied a few testimonials that we have received from our participants:

There is always good sample quality and accuracy in sample delivery“
“Efficient and professional service”
“Meets our needs, quality samples in time, excellent communication”
“Service is exemplary, any request dealt with promptly, fantastic service”
“Answer all our questions and solve our problems”

  • We have been operating since 1975 giving us over 45 years H&I-specific EQA experience.
  • The UK NEQAS for H&I team has a collective 117 years of experience in H&I!
  • We will have access to H&I experts in the UK NEQAS for H&I team and Steering Committee.
  • We offer educational support especially with any issues identified by unsatisfactory performance.
  • UK NEQAS for H&I has customers in over 50 countries.
  • The NEQAS Consortium has customers in 160 countries.
  • We are involved in the production of UK and International guidelines.
  • Participation in our schemes allows you to compare your lab performance against other laboratories worldwide.
  • We provide laboratories with an annual participation report to summarise your performance.
  • We produce peer reviewed publications of EQA findings.
  • We present our data and findings at International Conferences such as the ‘Meet the Experts’ EQA session at the annual EFI Conference.
  • We are directly involved in the production of UK and international guidelines, and other scientific publications.
  • UK NEQAS for H&I continually evolve and review our services to reflect changes in current practise.
  • We can assist with the validation of new technologies through provision of EQA material on request.
  • Participation in EQA ensures you are providing the best results for your patients. You will have access to information regarding which technologies other laboratories are using for the same scheme.
  • Research and Development – we have worked with NIBSC as well as the BSHI Research Executive on collaborative projects.
  • We collaborate with manufacturers and regulatory agencies such as the MHRA to alert them to issues and assist in early resolution of problems with assays, analysers and kits.
  • Our staff are active in the H&I community, directly contributing to a range of scientific bodies such as EFI, BSHI and the RCPath.
  • Our customers trust us to provide an excellent service and quality samples. Many of us participants have been with us since the service began in 1975.
  • The primary role of UK NEQAS is educational. We are committed to supporting a culture of continuous quality improvement within UK NEQAS and our participants.
  • Our educational role is achieved by:
    • Highlighting best practice, common errors or poor practice, up-to-date guidance and clinically relevant performance issues.
    • Allowing participants to compare their assay performance across time, across method, across networks.
    • Annual Participant Meeting with guest speakers
    • Webinars.
    • Clinically relevant scenarios based on real life scenarios distributed with summaries provided of all responses.
  • Our mission statement is:

Assuring clinical laboratory test results are accurate, reliable and comparable wherever they are produced to facilitate optimal patient care”.

  • UK NEQAS for H&I is accredited by United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) to ISO 17043:2010.
  • UK NEQAS for H&I is included in the EFI “Register of EPT Providers”.
  • We offer a comprehensive range of EQA Schemes to meet the clinical service requirements of H&I laboratories. If we don’t provide a service which would be useful to your laboratory please let us know and we will try to accommodate your request.
  • We send samples that meet strict quality guidelines that have been specifically selected to be informative.
  • Come and meet us face to face or virtually at conferences and meetings.
  • Join in discussions on our schemes and findings as well as focusing on best practice and latest developments within H&I at our annual participants’ meeting.
  • Our bespoke Portal was created specifically with our customers at the forefront of development.
  • The Portal allows our participants to register, select the schemes and analytes appropriate to their clinical services, specify delivery requirements, enter results, view anonymised results and methods submitted by all participants, view and download your reports, submit CAPA responses as well as generate quotes and invoices.
  • UK NEQAS are used by over 100,000 clinical laboratory scientists and associated healthcare professionals in more than 150 countries.
  • UK NEQAS has been providing EQA for over 50 years starting 1969.
  • The services offered by UK NEQAS cover haematology, microbiology, clinical chemistry, genetic testing, cellular pathology, reproductive science and immunology with over 300 external quality assessment programmes.
  • All UK NEQAS EQAs are designed and run by organisers and managers who are wholly committed to leadership in better healthcare worldwide, are experts in current clinical practice in laboratory and clinical diagnostics.
  • Our independence is assured through a Board of Trustees, governance mechanisms, codes of practice and independent advice through our steering committees of medical and scientific staff.
  • All members of the UK NEQAS consortium are committed to:
      • Providing EQA services that are appropriate to clinical practice, responsive to laboratory needs and ISO 17043 accredited.
      • Support education of clinical laboratory scientists and related staff.
      • Provide laboratories with information on relative performance of different methods.
      • Assist laboratories to achieve good EQA performance.
      • Support laboratories in attaining ISO 15189 accreditation.
      • Present findings of EQA programmes at national and international conferences.
      • Publish findings from EQA programmes in international peer reviewed journals.
      • Collaborate with international bodies and groups.
  • UK NEQAS for H&I is an environmentally conscious organisation. As such we acknowledge the potential environmental impact that our operations may have on the environment.  We recognise our responsibility under the Welsh Government’s Wellbeing of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015 to promote development which meets the needs of the present in a manner which avoids the depletion of natural resources.
  • We are part of the NEQAS charity and run as a not for profit organisation. Our fees reflect this ethos.  All our fees are subject to annual review and cost savings are always passed on to customers.
  • If you join a Scheme part way through the distribution cycle you will only pay pro rata for any samples not yet sent.
  • EQA participation ensures the reliability of test results and tests.
  • EQA participation demonstrates that your laboratory is committed to providing the highest quality of analysis for all patients.

The Relevance of EXTERNAL QUALITY ASSURANCE

The UK National External Quality Assessment Service (NEQAS) provide an external quality assessment (EQA) service for clinical laboratories. EQA monitors laboratory performance using ‘blind’ samples analysed as if they were patient samples to ensure testing is comparable, safe and clinically useful to a patient no matter where the testing is performed.

The purpose of EQA:

  • Allow labs to monitor, evaluate and improve all aspects of service provision.
    • Allows participants to compare their assay performance across time, across method, across networks
  • Give insight into individual lab performance in a national setting helping to drive improvements.
  • May reveal unsuspected areas of weakness and can also act as a check on the efficacy of internal quality control procedures.
  • Can be used as a tool for competency assessment of lab staff.
  • Independent
  • Highlights best practice, common errors or poor practice, up-to-date guidance and clinically relevant performance issues.
  • EQA participation demonstrates that your laboratory is committed to providing the highest quality of analysis for all patients.

 

AIMS

UK NEQAS for H&I is a not-for-profit organisation aiming to:

  • Provide professionally-led and scientifically-based EQA schemes with a primarily educational objective
  • Help the laboratory appraise its performance and monitor improvements externally through continuous operation, regular distributions of samples and performance feedback
  • Produce reports which are designed to be clear, informative and structured to assist interpretation
  • Assess technical, analytical and interpretive performance of a laboratory
  • Participation in an appropriate, accredited EQA Scheme is a requirement of accreditation to ISO:15189 standards.

EQA forms an essential part of quality assurance within a laboratory and provides evidence of individual laboratory performance. However, it gives only a snapshot of a laboratory’s performance at any given time and the information reported back is inevitably a retrospective view of the quality of results. It should be undertaken in addition to, not in place of, other quality assurance measures.

 

Clinical Governance

UK NEQAS is an important part of clinical governance and quality assurance structures and reports to a number of oversight bodies in the UK such as RCPath, MHRA and UKAS to support better governance and patient safety.

If you have any further questions, please contact us directly.

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