The North East Innovation Lab, part of Newcastle Hospitals has achieved a major milestone with accreditation to an international standard.
The lab has been awarded accreditation by UKAS to ISO 15189 for SARS-CoV-2 testing which assesses not only the testing carried out by the lab, but also the quality management system required to ensure the laboratory operates to the highest standards.
This accreditation demonstrates the commitment of the team to providing a high-quality service and a dedication to continual improvement.
John Tyson, head of the lab, said: “We are pleased to have received this important accreditation which provides our clients with confidence that we are working to the highest standards of quality assurance and performance.”
Assessments under UKAS accreditation ensure labs meet the relevant requirements including the operation of a quality management system and the ability to demonstrate that specific activities are performed within the criteria set out in the relevant standard.
The lab’s work has expanded beyond Covid-19 and now includes other infectious disease, cancer and sepsis and the team will be working towards expanding the accreditation.
Jamie Burbeck, quality manager, said: “We are delighted to have achieved this accreditation which is a globally recognised standard and demonstrates that we are delivering quality levels of performance and competence.
“This accreditation will also help provide further confidence in the quality of the data that the lab provides its clients by demonstrating that it has been assessed by an independent third-party against defined international standards.”
The North East Innovation Lab is part of Newcastle Hospitals and supports diagnostic developers with the development of their tests including independent evaluations for new and emerging diagnostics; methodology and protocol development; and bespoke sample collection.
The lab also has a biobank which holds over 22,000 carefully curated samples, including blood, serum and saliva, with associated detailed metadata, offering clients access to the clinical samples needed to test their products and devices.