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Quality Assurance- a program for the systematic monitoring and evaluation of the various aspects of a project, service, or facility

to ensure that standards of quality are being met Quality management system (QMS) -can be expressed as the organizational structure, procedures, processes and resources needed to implement quality management. 1 (in health care) any evaluation of services provided and the results achieved as compared with accepted standards. In one form of quality assurance, various attributes of health care, such as cost, place, accessibility, treatment, and benefits, are scored in a two-part process. First, the actual results are compared with standard results; then, any deficiencies noted or identified serve to prompt recommendations for improvement. 2 a system of review of selected hospital medical and/or nursing records by medical and/or nursing staff members, performed for the purposes of evaluating the quality and effectiveness of medical and/or nursing care in relation to accepted standards. Internal quality control -at the chemical analytical laboratory, involves a continuous, critical evaluation of the laboratorys own analytical methods and working routines. The control encompasses the analytical process starting with the sample entering the laboratory and ending with the analytical report. The most important tool in this quality control is the use of control charts. The basis is that the laboratory runs control samples together with the routine samples. The laboratory shall have quality control procedures for monitoring the validity of tests undertaken. The resulting data shall be recorded in such a way that trends are detectable and, where practicable, statistical techniques shall be applied to the reviewing of the results. It concludes all SQC methods which are performed every day by the laboratory personnel with the laboratorys materials and equipment. It checks primarily the precision (repeatability or reproducibility) of the method. External Quality Control- The activities which are routinely initiated and performed by persons outside of normal operations to assess the capability and performance of a measurement process. It concludes all SQC methods which are performed periodically (i.e. every month, every two months, twice a year) by the laboratory personnel with the contribution of an external center (referral laboratory, scientific associations, diagnostic industry etc.). It checks primarily the accuracy of the laboratorys analytical methods. However, there are certain EQC schemes that check both the accuracy and the precision. 1. The pre-analytical stage encompasses all the procedures which are take place before the analysis of the patients samples on the automated analyzers (e.g. blood drawing, sample transportation, centrifugation, dilutions etc). 2. The analytical stage includes the analytical methods 3. The post-analytical stage refers to transmission of data from analyzers to the LIS, validation of results that have been produced and posting of the results to physicians or patients. Precision is the closeness of agreement between independent test results obtained under stipulated conditions. Accuracy is the closeness of the agreement between the result of a measurement and a true value of the measurand.

Benchmarking (bench-mark-ing) n. a process by which best practice is identified and continuous improvement is generated through the sharing of evidence and the comparison of practice. is the process of comparing one's business processes and performance metrics to industry bests or best practices from other industries. A measurement of the quality of an organization's policies, products, programs, strategies, etc., and their comparison with standard measurements, or similar measurements of its peers. The objectives of benchmarking are (1) to determine what and where improvements are called for, (2) to analyze how other organizations achieve their high performance levels, and (3)to use this information to improve performance. Management is the act of getting people together to accomplish desired goals and objectives using available resources efficiently and effectively. Management comprises planning, organizing,staffing, leading or directing, and controlling an organization (a group of one or more people or entities) or effort for the purpose of accomplishing a goal. Interlaboratory analysis is the general term for analysis requiring the active participation of more than one laboratory to obtain the desired information. A minimum of five laboratories should be used to provide meaningful statistical conclusions. Different types of studies are designed to evaluate or assess the important factors affecting the reliability of analytical results. Studies involving several laboratories with each preparing its own test materials and using its own methods, sometimes called cooperative studies. Interlaboratory studies of methods or materials requiring specialized expertise, techniques, or instrumentation may encompass all the existing laboratories that can conduct a specialized type of analysis. Three phases of laboratory testing: Pre-analyticalspecimen collection, transport and processing. Most errors affecting laboratory test occur in the pre-analytical phase 68% Pre analytical Phase (patient and specimen variation) The majority of laboratory diagnostic errors occur during the pre-analytical phase, the importance of standardization are designed to decrease specimen variability and thus to improve the validity of diagnostic test results. Errors at any stage of the collection, testing and reporting process can potentially lead to a serious patient misdiagnosis Analyticaltesting. 13% Analytical Phase (performance of the test).It is a critical stage where rigorous testing and examination took place to stop a number of potentially unfavorable results. Post-analyticaltesting results transmission, interpretation, follow-up, retesting. 19% Post analytical Phase (reporting, recording or interpreting results ) Quality assurance in the post-analytical stage includes: 1) Reporting and verifying test results 2) Taking appropriate action when the result has serious clinical implications. 3) Ensuring test results are interpreted correctly and adequate records are kept.