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Proficiency testing activities 2006-2007
Activities in the area of proficiency testing supported by the NMS Chemical and Biological Metrology programme have involved:
Eurachem Proficiency testing working group
The EA/Eurolab/Eurachem working group on proficiency testing in accreditation procedures
The Eurachem UK/VAM proficiency testing working group
Collaboration with IUPAC
The international Eurachem proficiency testing working group (PTWG) is chaired LGC. The PTWG provides a forum within the European chemical measurement community for pursuing excellence in the development and implementation of proficiency testing.
The group aims to:
- Improve the organisation of proficiency testing in Europe.
Promote best practice in proficiency testing using appropriate mechanisms such as publications, workshops etc.
Provide a forum for organisers and users of proficiency testing schemes on issues affecting the practice of proficiency testing.
Organise, on a periodic basis, an International workshop on proficiency testing in analytical chemistry, microbiology and laboratory medicine.
Provide input into international activities related to proficiency testing.
During 2007 the group has been involved in several activities including:
- Translation of the WG’s PT leaflet into various European languages in order to maximise the benefit. The leaflet is currently available in Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish and Turkish. All versions of the leaflet can be downloaded from the Eurachem and EPTIS websites.
- Production of a terms and definitions discussion paper which is intended to illustrate the inconsistencies in definitions across various guides and standards relating to proficiency testing, and to make some recommendations on the most suitable definitions. This is available to download from the Eurachem website.
- Contribution to the revision of ILAC G13 “Guidelines for the requirements for the competence of providers of proficiency testing schemes”
- Production of a bibliography of PT documents which will shortly be published on the Eurachem website with a link from the EPTIS website.
- Organisation of the 6th Eurachem workshop on proficiency testing in analytical chemistry, microbiology and laboratory medicine to be held 5th – 7th October 2008 in Rome. There will be two training courses held on Sunday 5th October; one for PT providers on the implementation of statistical procedures in ISO 13528 and one aimed at PT participants on the selection, use and interpretation of PT schemes. The actual workshop will be on the Monday and Tuesday (6th/7th) comprising of presentations on a range of PT related topics by invited speakers and working group discussions.
- Provision of input and comments from the chemical measurement community to the EA/Eurolab/Eurachem working group on proficiency testing in accreditation procedures (EEE-PT WG).
The EA/Eurolab/Eurachem working group on proficiency testing in accreditation procedures (EEE-PT WG) has been established as a joint activity by EA, Eurolab and Eurachem (EEE) to provide support on the use of proficiency testing (PT) to laboratory personnel and accreditation assessors. The aim of the working group (WG) is to develop common policy and technical advice covering proficiency testing in all areas of testing, measurement and analysis in order to improve the reliability of testing, measurement and analytical results to meet European needs.
The chair is currently held by LGC. The EEE-PT WG contributes to the development and revision of International Standards and Guides for PTs and other inter-laboratory comparisons (ILCs). The main activities of the WG during 2007 have been:
The Eurachem UK/VAM proficiency testing working group (PTWG) provides a focus in the UK for discussion of proficiency testing (PT) issues. The chair is currently held by LGC.
The WG provides a UK input to the activities of the Eurachem PT WG and the EEE-PT WG, and provides a mechanism for feedback from the PT international networks to UK PT providers. This working group also acts as a technical focus group to the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) for issues relating to the accreditation of UK PT providers.
LGC staff have contributed to the development of guidance on proficiency testing for smaller schemes. This is an important topic where small numbers of laboratories undertake particular types of measurement, or where a large commercial scheme is unavailable. The IUPAC project is still under way, but preliminary recommendations have been developed and published. The project is expected to complete in March/April 2008, with the publication of completed guidance.
Further information on any of the material above may be obtained by contacting the NMS helpdesk at LGC.
Last modified on
29 January 2008.