(2003; 148 pages)
5.1 External quality assessment scheme
The Committee noted that 12 national quality control laboratories had been involved in a external quality assessment scheme, with feedback being obtained from most of these laboratories. It also noted that a second phase involving 36 laboratories would soon commence.
This scheme contributes to the establishment of mutual confidence between users and laboratories, and is a very useful tool for assessing the analytical skills of participating laboratories.
The Committee adopted the following recommendations on the External Laboratory Assessment Scheme made during a consultation held in Geneva in September 2001:
• The same methodology (pharmacopoeia methods) should be used by all laboratories in the statistical evaluation of results.
• This initiative should be pursued provided that funds are available. In experimental studies, the methods given in The International Pharmacopoeia should continue to be used.
• If funds are not available, WHO should inform the laboratories about other existing schemes. In this context, WHO should ask for more information from other sources about existing schemes.