Quality Assurance and Accreditation

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For information on the Accreditation schedule, please follow the link at the bottom of the page.


Quality Assurance

In order to ensure the quality of our service the department participates in a number of external quality assurance schemes (EQA) including:

United Kingdom National External Quality Assessment Scheme (UK NEQAS):

  • ABO and RhD Grouping
  • Antibody Identification
  • Antibody Screening
  • Red Cell Phenotyping
  • Cross Matching
  • Feto-Maternal Haemorrhage
  • Direct Agglutination Test

NHSBT Internal Proficiency Exercise (IPEx): 

Scenario based exercises including sample processing and knowledge based questions for each scenario. 

Uncertainty of measurement

Medical testing gives results that are subject to a degree of variability. This can be due to biological variation, analytical variation, or other factors such as poor specimen collection, delays in transport, clerical and reporting errors. It is important to identify and minimise these factors. The extents to which these factors affect Transfusion test performance, particularly for qualitative or semi-qualitative tests, are currently being established.

Biological variation can be random in nature; can be cyclical over the period of a day, month or longer; or can be due to differences in gender, age, or other discriminators. The latter can be accounted for by establishing different reference ranges where necessary across different demographic groups.


Analytical variation represents the degree to which a reported result may deviate from the true result. Small changes to variables such as temperature, volume and composition of reagent and sample aliquot, and electromagnetic interference can cause small variations in the detected value of assay results. The laboratory regularly assays internal quality control (IQC) materials in order to ensure the performance of our assays on a day-to-day basis.

If you would like more detailed information on our performance for a particular analyte, or for more information on Uncertainty of Measurement please contact the department on extension 8451 or 8452.

For more information on Uncertainty of Measurement please contact either:
Consultant Haematologist – Dr S. Nagumantry (ext. 8427)
Haematology/Transfusion Manager and Blood Sciences Lead – Kerry Winham-Whyte (ext. 8441)