» Technical Bulletin – Managing the impact of the coronavirus outbreak – Certification Bodies

30 March, 2020

Version 3

This Bulletin concerns UKAS accredited Certification Bodies with activities in regions affected by coronavirus and provides an update to the earlier Technical Bulletin dated 06 March 2020 as a result of the fast-moving situation. It applies equally to bodies certifying management systems (ISO/IEC 17021-1), persons (ISO/IEC 17024) and products/processes services (ISO/IEC 17065). Please also be aware of statements issued on the EA and IAF websites including a set of IAF FAQs specific to this topic.

You will be aware of the current situation regarding the escalating effects of the coronavirus outbreak. In response UKAS has taken action that affects visits to affected regions (please see our article in the UKAS News section). As the picture develops, we expect that CBs are also considering how to deal with any commitments that they have in affected areas while travel restrictions are in place.

CBs should be aware of the UKAS Technical Policy Statement -TPS 62 - which sets out CB obligations when dealing with such situations. This TPS is based upon IAF Informative Document IAF ID 3 Management of Extraordinary Events or Circumstances Affecting ABs, CABs and Certified Organizations, and CBs should take this TPS into consideration when deciding on a risk-based strategy for undertaking activities for maintaining certification for management systems, products, processes, services and/or persons. This risk-based strategy should take account of industry/sector input and should be provided to the CB’s UKAS Assessment Manager at the earliest opportunity.

It is recognised that due to the travel restrictions and the self-quarantining of resources some operations are effectively closed but during this situation CBs are requested to provide monthly updates to their UKAS Assessment Manager of the status of their affected operations.

Where local accreditation bodies and/or authorities have issued instructions within their jurisdiction these requirements will be taken into consideration when reviewing the acceptability of individual CB action plans.

As part of the normal assessment activities UKAS will assess the implementation and ongoing effectiveness of the management of any special arrangements.

Please note sector schemes may have additional requirements that must continue to be met.

TPS 62 Management of Extraordinary Events or Circumstances Affecting UKAS Accredited Certification Bodies and their Certified Organisations

Should you require any clarification on the subject covered by this bulletin, please contact; your Assessment Manager; Kevin Belson, Technical Manager - kevin.belson@ukas.com or Steve Randall, Accreditation Specialist - Certification - steve.randall@ukas.com

 

For information relating to other accredited bodies please refer to the Technical Bulletin Managing the impact of the coronavirus outbreak - Laboratories, Inspection Bodies & Healthcare Services.

 

To download a PDF copy of this Technical Bulletin click here