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The current status and future of medical laboratory quality regulation and accreditation in Ghana

High-quality and reliable laboratory services are important components of effective and well-functioning health systems. Accurate, reliable and timely medical laboratory testing is crucial to patient care and disease surveillance. Unfortunately, in many sub-Saharan African countries, medical laboratory systems are adversely affected by the unavailability of medical laboratories, poor laboratory infrastructure and lack of well-trained personnel [1]. Quality in the laboratory is only achieved in a systematic way through the implementation of a quality management system. The results of the study showed that approximately 60 % of the 78 respondents were unaware of the requirements of ISO 15189:2007. A trial of proficiency testing, termed ‘blind proficiency testing’, was carried out in which 19 laboratories determined the concentrations of urea and cholesterol in a proficiency testing material. Of the 19 laboratories that determined the concentration of urea, 63 % produced satisfactory results with scores between −2 and +2. Similarly, 63 % of the participating laboratories obtained satisfactory z scores for cholesterol determination. Some of the laboratories that obtained satisfactory scores for urea determination had unsatisfactory scores for cholesterol determination and vice versa. It is recommended that the Ghanaian government pass a law and establish a standard to regulate medical laboratories in Ghana in order to improve quality in a significant way.

Authors:   Enoch Cobbina, Julius Yao Agbezudor, Prince Sodoke Amuzu, Thomas K. Gyampomah
Journal:   Accreditation and Quality Assurance: Journal for Quality, Comparability and Reliability in Chemical Measurement
Year:   2012
DOI:   10.1007/s00769-012-0927-x
Publication date:   03-Sep-2012
Facts, background information, dossiers
  • ISO
  • concentration
  • accreditation
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