"NEW" Interlaboratory Comparison (sample exchange) programmes

Interlaboratory comparisons (or sample exchanges) between laboratories are a method of monitoring laboratory performance which are suitable for accreditation purposes in certain defined circumstances, for example tests on very rare diseases where there are a small number of labs perform testing, and there are no EQA schemes available.

EMQN will provide support for Interlaboratory Comparisons (ILCs) in accordance with published international guidance.

Benefits for your laboratory

  • EMQN has links with a large network of laboratories who may also be interested in joining an ILC,
  • EMQN already plans and delivers external quality assessment (EQA) to the standards described in ISO17043,
  • EMQN as the ILC organizer can give independence of assessment to all participants in the scheme,
  • EMQN can provide a certificate as evidence of participation for accreditation, and
  • EMQN will act as an independent intermediary to help resolve any discordant results.
  • EMQN will facilitate the exchange of materials between laboratories for the ILC, will assess the genotyping results, and will provide a report summarising the results for the ILC.

Costs of Participation

  • There is an annual fee of £200 to participate per ILC study, and EMQN membership will be required.
  • Participating laboratories will be asked to commit for a minimum of 3 years (total cost £600 per ILC study).

ILC Proposals and registration

  • Please submit an Expression of interest form (visit the link above) if you would like to propose an inter-laboratory comparison study.
  • EMQN will accept a minimum of 3, and a maximum of 7 laboratories for an ILC study.
  • Once sufficient participants register interest, EMQN will contact you to arrange registration.
  • All ILC studies will be genotyping-only– no assessment of clinical interpretation will be made.

Want to know more?

  • Download a copy of our information guide by visiting the link above.