» EA Recognised Proficiency Testing Schemes

26 March, 2014

UKAS is required by the European Cooperation for Accreditation (EA) to highlight Proficiency Testing (PT) schemes that have been specifically chosen by the EA Laboratory Committee (LC) in a wide range of testing and calibration activities. This requirement ensures that participation in these schemes is undertaken by accredited laboratories from a representative selection of countries with membership of EA to demonstrate that accreditation is working effectively in providing consistent results throughout Europe and to identifying and common underlying trends in data or analytical errors. This serves to demonstrate the effectiveness of the Multilateral Agreement on the equivalence of the work of Accredited Laboratories throughout Europe and beyond, as it connects with the ILAC international Mutual Recognition Arrangement.

The primary objective of these schemes is to assess the performance of laboratories in the conduct of specific tests, measurements or calibrations. Many laboratories operate in isolation and do not routinely have the opportunity to compare their data with others. Without such opportunities there are risks that a laboratory’s data might include errors, biases or significant differences that might otherwise go undetected.

Some of these schemes allocate a limited number of free places for participants which can be allocated by UKAS to accredited laboratories based on applicability and availability (please note that if you are nominated you will be contacted by UKAS with full details of the process). Please also note that other schemes are likely to require participation fees to be paid by the laboratory.

Currently highlighted PT schemes:

1) Therapeutic Drugs Monitoring Proficiency Testing Scheme - Therapeutic drugs TM 130. Registration deadline 30/06/14.

The aim of the Therapeutic Drugs Monitoring proficiency testing scheme, organised by LGC, is to enable laboratories performing the analysis of therapeutic drugs to monitor their performance and compare it with that of their peers. The TDM scheme also aims to provide information to participants on technical issues and methodologies relating to Therapeutic Drug Monitoring.

The operation of all schemes is supported by an Advisory Group consisting of members of the
professional bodies, scheme participants, and others experienced in the field of therapeutic drug
monitoring. The scheme reports on the performance of U.K. participants to the National Quality
Assurance Advisory Panels for Chemical Pathology and for Medical Microbiology.

Further information is available on the LCG website http://www.lgcpt.com/Default_eng.aspx
NB: for those laboratories already registered for this scheme as part of their routine exercises it is not necessary to register again. For this PT scheme, participation cost is to be covered by participants.

2) Polybrominated diphenylether in surface water 9/14 - Application deadline: 02/10/2014
This PT scheme, organised by AQS Baden-Württemberg, has been created to determine the chemical analysis of priority and other substances in the context of chemical monitoring for the European Water Framework Directive, especially for compliance of surface waters with Environmental Quality Standards (EQS).

For further information or to enrol, please contact (NB: pre-registration is also available – please contact the PT provider by 30/06/14):

AQS Baden-Württemberg, Bandtäle 2, 70569 Stuttgart, Germany
Phone: +49 711 685 65446
E-Mail: info@aqsbw.de
Contact: Heidi Sanwald, Dr. Frank Baumeister, Dr. Michael Koch

3) Charpy impact testing (ISO 148-1 / ISO 148-2). Scheme no. 1411. Registration deadline 30/04/2014.

This PT scheme is organized by ifep, Germany.
Please register your interest by Fax to: +49 (0) 2365 / 209 00 35 or via E-Mail to: Sorge@ifep.eu

4) IMEP-118 Determination of total As, Cd, Pb, Hg, Sn and As in canned food. Registration deadline 14/04/2014.

This PT is organized by IRMM, and so it is free of charge for a limited group of UKAS nominated laboratories (please wait for UKAS to contact you to discuss the possibility of your laboratory participating – this will normally be at least 2 weeks before the registration deadline).
The scheme has been set up to support the "Commission Regulation (EC) No 1881/2006 setting maximum levels for certain contaminants in foodstuffs".

Further information is available at: http://irmm.jrc.ec.europa.eu/EURLs/EURL_heavy_metals/interlaboratory_comparisons/Pages/IMEP-118DeterminationoftotalAs,Cd,Pb,Hg,SnandiAsincannedfood.aspx

Organisations may choose to participate in this scheme without UKAS nomination but will need to meet the costs of participation themselves.