Summary of EUGT French workshops


In addition to their voluntary commitment, all medical laboratories in France must by law be accredited according to ISO 15189 by the end of 2018, and provide evidence of their commitment to the process by 2014. These requirements have led to considerable interest in training and harmonization, for the 236 genetics laboratories in France.

EuroGentest has organized a series of French-language workshops on accreditation, in partnership with and hosted by the Agence de la biomédecine, the French national agency overseeing genetic diagnostics. Five workshops have been held since 2009, and four more are planned until the end of 2012. The chosen topics are “Accreditation for beginners”, “Internal quality control, external quality assessment and management review”, “Managing the human side of change”, and “Validation of methods”.

With 112 participants from France, Belgium and Switzerland, the first 5 workshops have been a great success. Accreditation is demystified; feedback reveals in particular that participants are pleased to realize how many quality processes they have already implemented. They can identify what is still to be done, and have the knowledge to proceed. The workshops are characterized by active participation, with group discussion of situations routinely encountered in the laboratory. The exchange of ideas, practices and documents between participants is a very attractive and beneficial feature, which also contributes to harmonization. The fact that participants speak the same language facilitates such exchanges and allows participation of all categories of staff including technicians, which is a key contribution to the success of the process.

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