Mythbusting: ‘Using IQC and EQA From the Same Provider Leads to QC Bias’

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Mythbusting: ‘Using IQC and EQA From the Same Provider Leads to QC Bias’

Some laboratory professionals believe that using Internal Quality Control (IQC) and External Quality Assurance (EQA, also known as Proficiency Testing) material from the same provider can lead to increased levels of qc bias, or that their test system will not be appropriately challenged. It is important to address these concerns, because some labs may in fact be hindering their own performance by using IQC and EQA material from different sources.

It is important to first understand how IQC and EQA work together to help form a complete Laboratory Quality Management System.

IQC and EQA in Laboratory Quality Management

IQC is a means of monitoring test system precision on a daily basis. IQC effectively evaluates test system performance over time, so that any sudden or gradual shifts in performance can be detected. However, while IQC is an effective performance monitor, it cannot detect more intricate problems like calibration errors or wide acceptable limits provided by some QC manufacturers.

EQA is essential for challenging test system accuracy, and is carried out less frequently than IQC testing. EQA samples are tested ‘blind’ and the results are returned to the scheme organiser. As EQA testing compares an individual lab’s performance to other labs using the same method and instrument, it is a very effective tool for identification of potential issues.

Is there any disadvantage to using IQC and EQA material from the same provider?

The answer to this question depends primarily on the source material of the IQC and EQA. If an IQC provider manufactures their material using artificial additives or components of animal origin, then it will not be suitable to use EQA material from the same provider. Westgard (2011) maintains that using non-commutable IQC or EQA material can lead to results becoming compromised due to matrix effects – something which would not happen using commutable controls.

For example, with Immunoassay testing, non-human components of IQC material interact with antibodies in the reagent in a different way to fully human patient samples – ultimately giving unpredictable shifts, and not adhering to the ISO 15189 requirement to: “use quality control materials that react to the examining system in a manner as close as possible to patient samples”.

However, if the IQC and EQA material is manufactured using a source material which is similar in composition to patient samples (100% human), this commutable control will adequately mimic patient sample performance; meaning labs can use EQA and IQC material from the same provider with confidence that the integrity of their results is maintained.

Conclusion

ISO 15189 also states: “Use of independent third party control materials should be considered…”. In this instance, ‘Independent’ does not mean from a separate provider. It means that the QC material should not be optimized for use on one specific instrument (i.e. not dependent on a single instrument/method type).

No regulatory body states a requirement to use different providers for IQC and EQA material. Indeed, using IQC from one provider and EQA from another provider could increase the risk of labs using non-commutable material.

Labs should use commutable IQC and EQA material for a true assessment of their test system. Randox QC and RIQAS EQA are specifically designed with commutability in mind, giving labs a control which reflects patient sample performance and ensures excellent performance.

How can we help?

To learn how Randox can offer a complete solution for your laboratory, follow the links below or submit a question using the form above.

References

Westgard, S. (2011). Is QC Quality Compromised?. Available: https://www.westgard.com/qc-quality-compromised.htm. Last accessed 31st October 2017.

Mythbusting QC Bias
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Liquid ready-to-use controls & their benefits

Randox Quality Control is a world leading manufacturer of third party quality controls. With an extensive product portfolio – including the largest range of liquid ready-to-use controls, Randox QC will meet your laboratory requirements and deliver trustworthy results repeatedly.

What control formats are available for your laboratory?

There are three distinct formats available for use in the laboratory with each format having benefits and drawbacks. When choosing a Quality Control material it is important you choose the most convenient solution for your laboratory requirements. The three formats are;

  1. Lyophilised (freeze dried)
  2. Liquid frozen
  3. Liquid stable (ready-to-use)

What format is best?

There are several possible answers to this question, simply because, every laboratory is different. What works for one laboratory may not work for another and for this reason there is no one format that works best for all laboratories.

What we can say however, is that there are varying levels of convenience across the different formats. The most convenient, and arguably, the most favoured of the three formats is liquid ready-to-use. It is not difficult to understand why this format is widely regarded as the preferred choice of control in laboratories – they are simple to use, require no preparation and can be conveniently stored and shipped at 2-8oC.

Why should you consider a liquid ready-to-use control?

There are many benefits to using a liquid ready-to-use control over both liquid frozen and lyophilised controls. One of the main benefits of a liquid stable control material is that it eliminates any potential reconstitution/pipetting errors often associated with lyophilised controls.  They also eliminate the additional time taken to thaw liquid frozen controls and can significantly reduce shipping/delivery costs as they do not need to be shipped on dry ice.

Another major benefit of running a liquid ready-to-use control is the fact they are also suitable for use in Point-of-Care-Testing (POCT). With growing popularity amongst laboratory professionals and more people expecting rapid results, POCT is on the rise. Due to their easy to use nature, liquid ready-to-use controls are extremely beneficial to POCT providers.

One further benefit to using a liquid ready-to-use control is the longer open vial stability when compared to both lyophilised and liquid frozen controls. With many lyophilised and liquid frozen controls, the open vial stability can vary and generally is around 7 days when fully thawed or reconstituted in comparison to 28 days with a liquid ready-to-use control.

Randox Quality Control – Liquid Ready-to-Use Control Portfolio

The Randox QC portfolio – better known as Acusera – is convenient, hassle-free and cost effective. Our liquid ready-to-use control range includes; Liquid Cardiac, Blood Gas, Liquid Urine, Urinalysis, Specific Protein, Ammonia Ethanol, Haematology, Liquid HbA1c, Liquid CSF & Liquid Tumour Markers.

For further information on Randox Quality Control or our range of liquid ready-to-use controls please email us at acusera@randox.com.

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Randox QC Liquid ready-to-use controls


Acusera Internal Quality Control Analyte List

Quality Control is our passion; we believe in producing high quality material that can help streamline procedures, whilst saving time and money for laboratories of all sizes and budgets. With an extensive product offering comprising third party controls and calibrators, interlaboratory data management, external quality assessment, and calibration verification, you can count on Randox to deliver trustworthy results time and time again. Just ask one of our 60,000 users worldwide.

Our Acusera Internal Quality Control A – Z analyte list highlights how comprehensive our Acusera product portfolio is. Search through the list to see if we have the analyte you require.

Acusera Parameter List

#

5-HIAA
17-OH-progesterone
17β Clostebol
1-25-(OH₂)-Vitamin D
25-OH-Vitamin D

A

α-1-Acid Glycoprotein
α-1-Antitrypsin
α-1-Globulin (Electrophoresis)
α-2-Globulin (Electrophoresis)
α-2-Macroglobulin
α-Fetoprotein (AFP)
α-HBDH
ACE (Angiotensin Converting Enzyme)
Acetaminophen
Acid Phosphatase (Non-Prostatic)
Acid Phosphatase (Prostatic)
Acid Phosphatase (Total)
ACTH
Activated Partial Thromboplastin Time (APTT)
AHD
Albumin
Albumin (Electrophoresis)
Aldolase
Aldosterone
Alkaline Phosphatase (ALP)
ALT (GPT)
AMH
Amikacin
Ammonia
AMOZ
Amylase
Amylase (Pancreatic)
Androstenedione

Anti-HAV
Anti-HBc
Anti-HBe
Anti-HBs
Anti-HCV
Anti-HIV 1 / 2
Anti-HTLV 1 / 2
Anti-SARS-CoV-2
Anti-SARS-CoV-2 Spike
Anti-Streptolysin (ASO)
Anti-Thyroglobulin (Anti-TG)
Anti-Thyroperoxidase (Anti-TPO)
Anti-Thrombin III (AT III)
AOZ
Apolipoprotein A-I
Apolipoprotein A-II
Apolipoprotein B
Apolipoprotein C-II
Apolipoprotein C-III
Apolipoprotein E
AST (GOT)

B

β-Globulin (Electrophoresis)
β-2-Microglobulin
BASO-X
BASO-Y
Basophils (BASO)
Basophils % (% BASO)
Bicarbonate
Bile Acids
Bilirubin (Direct)
Bilirubin (Total)
Blood
Bone Alkaline Phosphatase (B-ALP)
Borrelia burgdorferi IgG
Borrelia burgdorferi IgM
Brain Natriuretic Peptide (BNP)

C

C-Peptide
C-Telopeptide
CA 15-3
CA 19-9
CA 72-4
CA 125
Caffeine
Calcitonin
Calcium
Carbamazepine
CEA
Ceftiofur
Ceruloplasmin
Chloramphenicol
Chloride
Cholesterol (HDL)
Cholesterol (LDL)
Cholesterol (Total)
Cholinesterase
CK-MB
CK (Total)
Complement C3
Complement C4
Copper
Cortisol
CRP
Creatinine
Cyclosporine
Cytomegalovirus (CMV) IgG
Cytomegalovirus (CMV) IgM
CYFRA 21
Cystatin C

D

D-3-Hydroxybutyrate
D-dimer
Deoxypyridinoline
DHEA-Sulphate

 

DIFF-X
DIFF-Y
Digoxin
Dopamine

E

E-Selectin (E-SEL)
Eosinophils (EOS)
% Eosinophils (% EOS)
Epidermal Growth Factor (EGF)
Epinephrine
Epstein Barr Virus (EBV) EBNA IgG
Epstein Barr Virus (EBV) IgM
Epstein Barr Virus (EBV) VCA IgG
Estriol
Ethanol
Ethinylestradiol
Ethosuximide

F

Factor II
Factor V
Factor VII
Factor VIII
Factor IX
Factor X
Factor XI
Factor XII
Ferritin
Fibrinogen
Folate
Fructosamine
FSC-X
FSH

 

G

G-6-PDH
γ-Globulin (Electrophoresis)
γGT
Gastrin
Gentamicin
Gestagens (Generic)
GLDH
Glucose
Glutamate
Glutathione Peroxidase (Ransel)
Glutathione Reductase
Glycerol
GM-CSF
Growth Hormone (GH)

H

Haematocrit (HCT)
Haemoglobin (HGB)
Haemoglobin (Total)
Haemolysis (H)
Haemopioetic Progenitor Cell (HPC)
Haptoglobin
HAV IgM
HbA1c
HBc IgM
HBeAg
HBsAg
hCG
Free β-hCG
Total β-hCG
HDL-3
Helicobacter pylori IgG
Herpes Simplex Virus 1 (HSV-1) IgG
Herpes Simplex Virus 1 (HSV-1) IgM
Herpes Simplex Virus 2 (HSV-2) IgG
Herpes Simplex Virus 2 (HSV-2) IgM
HIV-1 P24Ag
Homocysteine

I

Icterus (I)
IMIDC
IMIRF
Immature Granulocytes (IG)
% Immature Granulocytes (% IG)
Immature Myeloid Information (IMI)
Immature Platelet Fraction (IPF)
Immunoglobulin A (IgA)
High Sensitivity Immunoglobulin A (hsIgA)
Immunoglobulin E (IgE)
Immunoglobulin G (IgG)
High Sensitivity Immunoglobulin G (hsIgG)
Immunoglobulin M (IgM)
High Sensitivity Immunoglobulin M (hsIgM)
Inhibin A
Insulin
Intercellular Adhesion Molecule-I (ICAM-I)
Interferon-γ (IFN-γ)
Interleukin-Ia (IL-la)
Interleukin-1β (IL-1β)
Interleukin-2 (IL-2)
Interleukin-4 (IL-4)
Interleukin-5 (IL-5)
Interleukin-6 (IL-6)
Interleukin-8 (IL-8)
Interleukin-10 (IL-10)
Interleukin-15 (IL-15)
Iron
Iron (TIBC)
Iron (UIBC)

K

Kappa Light Chain
Ketones

 

L

L-Selectin (L-SEL)
Lactate
Lactate Dehydrogenase (LDH)
Lambda Light Chain
Lambda Light Chain (Free)
LAP
Leptin
Leukocytes
Lipase
Lipemia (L)
Lipoprotein (a)
Lithium
Luteinising Hormone (LH)
Lymphocytes (LYMPH)
% Lymphocytes (% LYMPH)

M

Magnesium
Matrix Metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9)
Measles IgG
Mean Corpuscular Haemoglobin (MCH)
Mean Corpuscular Haemoglobin Concentration (MCHC)
Mean Corpuscular Volume (MCV)
Mean Platelet Volume (MPV)
Metanephrine
Methandriol
Methotrexate
Methyltestosterone
Microalbumin
Macrophage Inflammatory Protein-1a (MIP-1a)
Monocytes (MONO)
Monocytes % (% MONO)
Monocyte Chemoattractant Protein-1 (MCP-1)
Mumps IgG
Myoglobin

Methyltestosterone
MDMA
Microalbumin
Macrophage Inflammatory Protein-1α (MIP-1α)
Monocytes (MONO)
Monocytes % (% MONO)
Monocyte Chemoattractant Protein-1 (MCP-1)
Morphine (Opiates)
Myoglobin

N

N-MID Osteocalcin (OC)
N-Telopeptide
NEFA
Neuron-Specific Enolase (NSE)
Neutrophils (NEUT)
Neutrophils % (% NEUT)
Neutrophil Gelatinase-associated Lipocalin (NGAL)
Nitrite
Norepinephrine
Normetanephrine
NT-proBNP
Nucleated Red Blood Cells (NRBC)
Nucleated Red Blood Cells % (% NRBC)
Nucleated Red Blood Cells X (NRBC-X)
Nucleated Red Blood Cells Y (NRBC-Y)

O

Oestradiol
Osmolality
Osteocalcin
Oxalate
Oxyhaemoglobin

P

P-Selectin (P-SEL)
Paracetamol
PAPP-A
pCO₂
pH
Phencyclidine
Phenobarbital
Phenylpiperazines
Phenytoin
Phosphate (Inorganic)
Plasminogen
Plasminogen Activator Inhibitor
Platelet Distribution Width (PDW)
Platelet Large Cell Ratio (P-LCR)
Plateletcrit (PCT)
Platelet (PLT)
Platelet Optical Count (PLT-O)
pO₂
Potassium
Prealbumin
Primidone
Procalcitonin
Procollagen Type 1 N-Terminal Propeptide (P1NP)
Progesterone
Prolactin
Protein C
Protein S
Protein (Total)
Prothrombin Time (PT)
Pyridinium Crosslinks
Pyridinoline
PSA (Total)
PSA (Free)
PTH (Parathyroid Hormone)
PTH (Intact)

Q

Quinolones

R

Red Blood Cell Y (RBC-Y)
Red Blood Cell Distribution Width CV (RDW-CV)
Red Blood Cell Distribution Width SD (RDW-SD)
Renin
Resistin
Retinol Binding Protein (RBP)
Rheumatoid Factor (RF)
Rubella IgG
Rubella IgM

S

Salicylate
Semicarbazine (SEM)
Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHBG)
sLDL
Sodium
Soluble IL-2 Receptor α (sIL-2Rα)
Soluble IL-6 Receptor (sIL-6R)
Soluble Transferrin Receptor (sTfR)
Soluble Tumour Necrosis Factor Receptor 1 (sTNFR I)
Soluble Tumour Necrosis Factor Receptor 11 (sTNFR I1)
Specific Gravity
Streptomycin
Superoxide Dismutase (Ransod)

T

T Uptake
T3 (Free)
T4 (Free)
T3 (Total)
T4 (Total)
Testosterone
Testosterone (Free)
Tetracyclines (Generic)
Theophylline
Thiamphenicol
Thrombin Time (TT)
Thyroglobulin
Tobramycin
Total Antioxidant Status (TAS)
Toxoplasma gondii IgG
Toxoplasma gondii IgM
Transferrin
Treponema pallidum (Syphilis) IgG
Triglycerides
Trimethoprim
Troponin I
Troponin T
TSH
Tumour Necrosis Factor α (TNFα)
Tylosin

U

Unconjugated Estriol
Urea
Uric Acid (Urate)
Urobilinogen

V

Valproic acid
Vancomycin
Vanillylmandelic Acid (VMA)
Varicella Zoster Virus (VZV) IgG
Vascular Cell Adhesion Molecule-1 (VCAM-1)
Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF)
Vitamin B₁₂

W

White Blood Cells (WBC)
White Blood Cells Differential (WBC-D)

Z

Zinc


Westgard’s Great Global QC Survey 2017

In a QC survey conducted this year, Sten Westgard reached out to more than 45,000 laboratory professionals to gain a comprehensive view of the world’s Quality Control practices. It was one of the largest surveys that have been conducted and shared publicly.

Read on as we take a summarised look at our favourite bits.

Setting control Limits

Most labs are using their actual performance to set their mean and SD, however, a large percentage of labs still use manufacturer’s ranges, peer group ranges, and other non-individual sources for SD. These ranges can typically be set wider than they would if the ranges were based on their actual mean and SD. This can result in labs releasing incorrect patient results.

Laboratories were asked if they used 2 SD control limits on all tests and it was found that a majority use 2 SD. The strict use of 2 SD can generate a high level of false rejections (9% for two controls and higher for three). This causes a high level of out-of-control events; the use of QC multi-rules is recommended.

Respondent Map - Westgard QC Survey

The types of Controls used by labs

More than 60% of labs were found to be using manufacturer controls, the drawbacks of which are well known. The latest ISO standards strongly encourage the use of independent / third-party controls. Westgard speculates that this will become a mandatory requirement in the next version of ISO 15189.

Frequency of QC

The first question about frequency asked how often labs ran QC during a run. Respondents reported how often they schedule QC in their labs. Around half only run QC at the beginning of a run with labs running it throughout the day coming in close second. A small proportion of labs reported running QC at both the beginning and the end of a run.

The final, least popular option involves spacing out QC based on test volume, the most scientific method determining how many patient samples can be run between controls without raising the risk of unacceptable results.

The next question asked about the overall frequency of QC. Most labs are meeting the once-a-day minimum standard for CLIA regulations.

“QC frequency remains primarily based on the rotational speed of the earth, not driven by needs of the clinician and patient.” – Sten Westgard

QC Frequency Influences

Regulator and accreditation requirements lead the way in influencing the frequency of QC with manufacturer recommendations, and professional judgement following close behind. Only a quarter of labs use the volume of testing to guide their QC frequency and one in six look to EP23 or IQCP for guidance.

Managing QC

Most labs are using on-board instrument informatics to support their QC charting, followed by LIS charting programs, and peer group software.

Of significance is the number of labs using Excel spreadsheets as their primary QC tool as well as standalone QC programs or even manual graph paper. This could be due to varying technological capabilities where some locations may not have access to, or the funds to afford, informatics.

A combined third of labs are out-of-control every day. In some labs this could be the result of running such a high volume of controls that false rejections are inevitable. However, rationalising in this way can lead to ‘alert fatigue’, where users begin to ignore alert flags and stop troubleshooting.

More than a quarter of labs have an out-of-control flag every few days while another roughly one in six have just one per week. A small number of labs report having few QC flags.

Managing QC Costs

Finally, laboratories were asked about the steps they take to manage QC costs. 60% claimed that they take no steps to manage costs. One in six reduced QC frequency, one in eight switched to cheaper controls, while, worryingly, almost one in ten changed their QC rules or widened limits.

Conclusion

Westgard’s Global QC Survey suggests there exists many inefficient implementations of Quality Control, with plenty of room for improvement. The current state of QC is, like many aspects of healthcare, unsustainable. Labs must adopt better approaches or risk their continuing feasibility, or worse, their patient’s results.

How Randox Can Help

Westgard highlights particular issues with labs mismanaging costs, still using manufacturer controls, and setting control limits this is where Randox comes in.

Acusera Third Party Controls offer the highest quality solution for any lab – regardless of size or budget. Designed to provide an unbiased, independent assessment of performance, our internal quality controls have not been manufactured in line with, or optimised for use with any particular reagent, method or instrument helping you to easily meet ISO 15189 recommendations. Unrivaled consolidation allows for significant cost savings.

Acusera 24•7 Live Online allows you to automatically apply multi-rules and generate charts to help with setting accurate control limits, helping you get your quality control under control.

Reference: Westgard, S (2017), The 2017 Great Global QC Survey Results

To learn more about how Randox Quality Control can help you improve your QC visit the pages below or fill out the contact form and someone will be in touch.


Product Spotlight: Maternal Screening

Product Spotlight: Maternal Screening Control

Maternal Screening Control

Background

A maternal serum screening test (MSS) is a blood test offered to pregnant women that helps determine the risk of Down’s syndrome and other chromosomal conditions, further testing can be offered if the patient is found to be high risk. It can be performed at 10 weeks (combined first trimester screening test), and 14-20 weeks (second trimester maternal serum screening test).

MSS is generally offered to all pregnant women, but the decision to have the test is a personal decision.

Quality Control is an important part of any diagnostic test but is of particular importance in screening methods, when a disorder must be detected without the presence of symptoms. In such screening methods, errors can present as false negative or false positive results both of which can have devastating consequences.  In the case of maternal screening a false positive result could mean additional and often invasive procedures which can carry risk of harm to the unborn child. The accuracy and reliability of the laboratory test results are extremely important in minimising both false positive and false negative results.

Product Overview

The Randox Acusera Maternal Screening quality control is the only commercially available control which covers all six analytes used during first and second trimester screening of Down’s syndrome and Spina Bifida.

Instrument specific target values and ranges are provided for AFP, Inhibin A, PAPP-A, β hCG, Total hCG and Unconjugated Estriol. The inclusion of PAPP-A and Inhibin A eliminates the need to purchase additional controls at extra expense.

Key Benefits & Features

  • Lyophilised for enhanced stability
  • 100% human serum
  • Assayed target values provided for 6 parameters
  • Suitable for double, triple and quad screens
  • Unconjugated Estriol present at clinically significant levels
  • Reconstituted stability of 7 days at 2°C – 8°C
  • Stable to expiry date at 2°C – 8°C

Consolidation

As a leading provider of multi-analyte, third party controls, Randox helps busy laboratories significantly reduce the number of controls needed to cover their test menu. Combining multiple analytes into a single control reduces cost, preparation time, and required storage space without sacrificing quality.

Analytes at key decision levels will not only ensure test system performance across the clinical range but will further aid consolidation and maximise laboratory efficiency by eliminating the need to purchase additional and often expensive low or high level controls.

First and second trimester

As the only control on the market to cover all first and second trimester analytes, you can be sure that your lab is covering all bases.

True third party control

The Acusera Maternal Screening Control is a true third party control designed to provide an unbiased assessment of performance with a range of instruments and methods, helping your laboratory meet the ISO 15189 requirements.

“the use of third party control materials should be considered,
either instead of, or in addition to, any control materials
supplied by the reagent or instrument manufacturer”.

Analytes

  • AFP
  • PAPP-A
  • Free Beta hCG
  • Total hCG
  • Inhibin A
  • Unconjugated Oestriol

Download some of our related brochures below and broaden your understanding.

Product Spotlight Archive

Don’t forget to visit our Product Spotlight Archive and see spotlights from different months


Randox showcases future-proofing diagnostic technology at MEDICA 2017

Randox Laboratories, the world-leading medical diagnostics manufacturer, is showcasing advancements in laboratory technology at the 2017 MEDICA – World Conference for Medicine conference, being held November 13-16 in Dusseldorf, Germany.

Unveiling its state-of-the-art interactive exhibition stand, Randox will host a series of demonstrations of its innovative analysers including the Evidence Evolution and Rx modena, and a number of exciting advances in laboratory medicine, involving  increasing the test menu available to clinicians and improving the connectivity of laboratories across the world to improve overall quality.

“Through our advancements in laboratory innovation, we’re driving an industry-wide evolution” said Randox CEO, Dr Peter FitzGerald.

“Our products are leading the way in innovation and enabling laboratories to transform the way they operate. We will be hosting demonstrations of a wide range of our fully-automated analysers, which are packed with cutting-edge technology and intuitive software. The goal is to provide future-proof diagnostic technology that will create the most efficient and effective laboratories.”

Paving the way is Randox’s patented Biochip Array Technology (BAT). This multi-analyte testing platform is the product of a £250 million research and development project. The ceramic tile measuring 9×9 mm can currently run up to 49 assays simultaneously,100 assays in the near future.   This innovation allows the simultaneous quantitative or qualitative detection from a wide range of analytes from a single sample. It is suitable for use in a wide range of laboratories including clinical, research, hospital, veterinary and forensic and clinical toxicology.

To enhance the benefits of BAT, Randox introduced the Evidence Evolution to its stable of immunoassay analyser platforms. The Evidence Evolution is the world’s first fully automated random-access biochip testing platform, capable of delivering 2640 results in one hour, with the first delivered in just 37 minutes.

Joining the Evolution in Hall 3 stand A08 is the RX modena. This highly reliable, precise, fully automated clinical chemistry analyser can run 1200 tests per hour including ISE. When combined with its unrivalled RX series test menu, it offers a winning combination for all large, multi-disciplinary laboratories.

“We develop more new tests than any other diagnostics manufacturer, and one of the products that we’re showcasing at this year’s MEDICA is Adiponectin,” added Susan Hammond, Global Sales Manager at Randox.

“This novel biomarker is a powerful new weapon in the fight against some of the biggest health issues faced throughout the world including diabetes, cancers and cardiovascular disease. As it’s World Diabetes Day on Tuesday 14th November, it’s a great opportunity to draw attention to this array which labs can run as part of their routine testing panel.”

MEDICA attendees will also be among the first to experience the advancements delivered by the latest update for Randox’s Acusera 24.7. This online interlaboratory data management and peer reporting package is now smarter, faster and more powerful than ever before.

Acusera 24.7 is designed to help laboratories efficiently review QC data from all their lab instruments on one central platform, thereby allowing quick and easy identification of QC failures and emerging trends. Unique access to peer group data updated instantly in real-time from our global network of laboratory participants will speed up troubleshooting and help pinpoint the root cause of any QC failures by easily identifying if an issue is isolated or widespread.

 

The Randox team will be on hand throughout MEDICA 2017 at stand #3A08. To make an appointment in advance, contact them through the Randox MEDICA webpage.

Click here for more information on Randox, or to get in touch, phone the Randox PR Team on 028 9442 2413, or email randoxpr@randox.com 


Product Spotlight: Liquid CSF Control

Liqiuid CSF Control - Product Spotlight

Liquid CSF Control

Cerebral Spinal Fluid (CSF) is produced by the body to protect, provide nutrients, and remove waste from the Central Nervous System (CNS). The CNS consists of the brain, spinal cord, and a complex neuron network. It is responsible for sending information to and receiving information from all parts of the body, co-ordinating organ function and responding to changes in the immediate external environment.

When testing CSF, it is removed from the subarachnoid space via lumbar puncture or spinal tap. The analysis of CSF includes tests such as; clinical chemistry, haematology, immunology and microbiology. These are used to diagnose serious bacterial, fungal, and viral infections, such as meningitis, a cerebral bleed, cancer involving the CNS and inflammatory conditions of the CNS.

Product Overview

Providing a true third party solution for the measurement of Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF), the Acusera Liquid CSF Control is designed to deliver an unbiased, independent assessment of analytical performance helping to ensure accurate and reliable patient testing of 14 analytes.

Key Features & Benefits

  • Liquid ready-to-use samples requiring no preparation
  • Human based material
  • Assayed target values available
  • True third party control providing unbiased performance assessment
  • Shelf life of 2 years from date of manufacture
  • Open vial stability of 30 days at 2ºC to 8ºC
Unrivalled Stability

Our Liquid CSF Control boasts a remarkable 30-day open vial stability reducing waste, while remaining easy and convenient to use.

A True Third Party Control

The Acusera CSF Control is a true third party control designed to provide an unbiased assessment of performance with a range of instruments and methods, helping your laboratory meet the ISO 15189 requirements.

“the use of third party control materials should be considered,
either instead of, or in addition to, any control materials
supplied by the reagent or instrument manufacturer”.

Analytes

  • Albumin (electrophoresis)
  • Alpha – 1- globulin (electrophoresis)
  • Alpha – 2- globulin (electrophoresis)
  • Beta- globulin (electrophoresis)
  • Chloride
  • Gamma – globulin (electrophoresis)
  • Glucose
  • hsIgA
  • hsIgG
  • hsIgM
  • Lactate
  • Microalbumin
  • Protein (Total)
  • Sodium

Download some of our related brochures below and broaden your understanding.

Product Spotlight Archive

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Product Spotlight: PTH Control

Liquid CSF Control Image

PTH Control

PTH is a notoriously unstable analyte and many competitors make reduced stability claims in their Immunoassay controls. Randox’s Liquid PTH Control provides laboratories with a dedicated product with an extended, 30-day, open vial stability to reduce waste and costs.

Parathyroid Hormone, better known as PTH, is produced by the Parathyroid glands to help the body maintain steady
volumes of calcium in the blood stream. PTH is part of a ‘feedback loop’ which also includes; calcium, vitamin
D, phosphate and magnesium. Interruptions to this loop can result in higher or lower levels of calcium or
PTH, leading to Hypercalcaemia or Hypocalcaemia. The Parathyroid Glands are responsible for the secretion of PTH in response to low calcium concentrations in the blood.

Product Overview

Released in 2016, Randox’s Liquid PTH Control provides a true third party solution for the measurement of Intact PTH, delivering an unbiased, independent assessment of analytical performance.

Key Features & Benefits

  • Liquid for ease-of-use
  • Human based serum
  • Assayed target values available for many immunoassay platforms
  • Stable to expiry date at -20°C to 70°C
  • Open vial stability of 30 days at 2°C to 8°C
Unrivalled Stability

Our Liquid PTH Control boasts a remarkable 30-day open vial stability! Many competitors fail to make stability claims in their immunoassay controls. Our PTH control includes target values and ranges, eliminating the need for extra validation work.

A True Third Party Control

The Acusera PTH Control is a true third party control designed to provide an unbiased assessment of performance with a range of instruments and methods, helping your laboratory meet the ISO 15189 requirements.

“the use of third party control materials should be considered,
either instead of, or in addition to, any control materials
supplied by the reagent or instrument manufacturer”.

Liquid Frozen

Available in three levels Acusera PTH Control is supplied in liquid frozen format, ensuring ease-of-use with no need to reconstitute. Coupled with it’shuman based matrix, it’s perfect for any laboratories conducting PTH testing.

Analytes

Intact PTH (Parathyroid Hormone)

Download some of our related brochures below and broaden your understanding.

Product Spotlight Archive

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Product Focus: Urology

Did you know?”

The month of September is Urology Awareness Month in 2017.

Focus On - Urology

This month our Randox QC Product Spotlight focuses on urology and our extensive range of urine chemistry controls and EQA programmes.

During the month of September, there is a particular focus placed on helping to raise awareness for Urology and the effects that urological diseases can have on a person’s life.

It is estimated that 1 in 2 people will be affected by a urological condition at some point in their lifetime. Conditions and diseases related to kidneys, bladder and prostate, among others, are commonplace and can be devastating for millions of men, women and children across the globe.

Urological conditions can be common, such as a urinary tract infections, or they can be much more serious, for example, prostate or testicular cancer.

Throughout September the aim is to make people more aware of these urological conditions and reduce the stigma attached by encouraging people to be more open when talking about their conditions.

So where do Randox Quality Control fit into this?

It is accepted that over 70% of medical decisions are based on laboratory test results with Quality Control playing an often behind the scenes but vital role in ensuring both accuracy and reliability.

Our range of Urine Chemistry and Urinalysis quality controls are designed primarily to ensure accurate test system performance however offer the laboratory additional benefits that will help them to meet regulatory requirements whilst also reducing costs and time.  Manufactured from 100% human urine each control will react to the test system in the same manner as a patient sample reducing inconvenient shifts in QC results when reagent batch is changed.  As true third party controls you can be sure of unbiased performance assessment with any instrument or method.

Introducing Acusera Urine Controls

With a choice of liquid or lyophilised and assayed or unassayed controls there is a cost effective option to suit any laboratory. Read on to find out more information on the range – each week of Urology month we will add additional products so make sure you come back every week to find out more!

Week One (1) - Acusera Assayed Urine Control

The Randox Acusera Assayed Urine Quality Control is designed for use in the routine monitoring of urine chemistry tests. Assayed, method specific target values and ranges are provided for 24 analytes including kidney function parameters, catecholamines and urinary proteins.

 

Features & Benefits

  • Lyophilised for enhanced stability
  • 100% human urine
  • Assayed target values provided for 24 parameters
  • Stable to expiry date at 2 – 8℃
  • Reconstituted stability of 5 days at 2 – 8℃ or 14 days at -20℃

Week Two (2) - Acusera Liquid Urine Control

The Randox Acusera Liquid Urine quality control is designed to be both convenient and easy to use. The liquid ready-to-use format eliminates issues with pipetting and allows convenient storage at 2 – 8℃. Assayed instrument and method specific target values and ranges are provided for 18 commonly tested urine chemistry parameters.

Features & Benefits

  • Liquid ready-to-use
  • 100% Human Urine
  • Assayed target values provided for 18 parameters
  • Stable to expiry date at 2oC – 8oC
  • Open vial stability of 30 days at 2oC – 8oC

Week Three (3) - Acusera Unassayed Urine Control

The Randox Acusera Unassayed Urine Quality Control is designed for use in the routine monitoring of 12 common urine chemistry parameters.

Features & Benefits

  • Lyophilised for enhanced stability
  • 100% human urine
  • Approximate target values available
  • Stable to expiry date at 2 – 8℃
  • Reconstituted stability of 5 days at 2 – 8℃or 14 days at -20℃

Week Four (4) - Acusera Liquid Urinalysis Control

The Randox Acusera Urinalysis quality control is specifically designed for use with both manual and automated method of urine test strip analysis. The control is available in convenient 12ml vials with assayed ranges provided for 13 parameters covering the chemical examination of urine strips.

Features & Benefits

  • Liquid ready-to-use
  • 100% human urine
  • Assayed ranges provided for 13 parameters
  • Suitable for use in POC testing
  • Stable to expiry date at 2 – 8℃
  • Open vial stability of 30 days at 2oC – 25oC (20 immersions for UC5033/5034)

Introducing RIQAS Urine Programmes

It is important to note that Randox QC don’t just supply top quality Urine Controls, we also have a number of RIQAS EQA programmes that go hand-in-hand perfectly. RIQAS is the largest, international EQA scheme in the world with over 45,000 laboratory participants spanning 133 countries, as such peer groups are maximised ensuring data for a wide range of instruments.

Week One (1) - RIQAS Human Urine Programme

The RIQAS Human Urine EQA programme is designed to monitor the performance of 25 routine chemistry assays in urine.

  • Accredited to ISO/IEC 17043
  • Lyophilised for enhanced stability
  • 100% human urine
  • Bi-weekly reporting
  • 24 x 10ml samples provided
  • Submit results and view reports online via RIQAS.Net
  • Register up to five instruments at no extra cost

Week Two (2) - RIQAS Urinalysis Programme

The RIQAS Urinalysis EQA programme is designed to monitor the performance of urine dipstick test using both manual and automated methods. All samples are supplied in a liquid ready-to-use format ideal for both clinical and point-of-care testing (POCT).

  • Liquid ready-to-use
  • 100% human urine
  • Bi-monthly reporting
  • Submit results and view reports online via RIQAS.Net
  • Suitable for POCT

The RIQAS Urine Toxicology EQA programme is designed to monitor the performance of 20 drugs of abuse tests in urine. Suitable for both qualitative and semi-quantitative methods of analysis.

  • Liquid ready-to-use
  • 100% human urine
  • Monthly reporting
  • Submit results and view reports online via RIQAS.Net
  • Suitable for use with both quantitative and screening methods
  • Report results for drug group or individual metabolite

Product Spotlight Archive

Don’t forget to visit our Product Spotlight Archive and see spotlights from different months


Product Focus: Randox HbA1c

This month’s product spotlight is our new Liquid HbA1c Control. Over the next few weeks, we will be taking a look at some of the QC solutions available from Randox for HbA1c.

Haemoglobin is an oxygen-transporting protein found inside Red Blood Cells (RBC). Glycated Haemoglobin is simply a haemoglobin with a glucose molecule attached. The higher the level of glucose in the blood the more glycated haemoglobin is formed. Red Blood Cells live for around 2-3 months, because of this the HbA1c test is used by clinicians to get an overall picture of average blood sugar levels for the last 2-3 months. For people with diabetes this is important as the higher the HbA1c, the greater the risk of developing diabetes-related complications. It is suggested that an individual’s HbA1c target should be under 48mmol/mol or below 6.5%. By lowering your HbA1c, you help reduce the risk of long-term health problems.

HbA1c is used to monitor patients with diabetes providing an indication of how well the condition is controlled. A measurement of less than 6% of HbA1c in the sample indicates good glucose control and a lower risk of diabetic complications for the majority of diabetics.

Week 1: HbA1C Quality Control

The Randox Acusera HbA1c control is designed for use in the quality control of both HbA1c and Total Haemoglobin assays. Assayed instrument and method specific target values and ranges are provided for all major systems and methods including HPLC. A reconstituted stability of 4 weeks keeps waste to a minimum and helps to reduce costs.

Main Features and Benefits:

Lyophilised for enhanced stability
100% human whole blood
Assayed target values provided for 2 parameters
Convenient bi-level pack containing two clinically significant levels of control
Stable to expiry date at 2°C – 8°C
Reconstituted stability of 4 weeks at 2°C – 8°C

Week 2: Liquid HbA1C Quality Control

The Randox Acusera Liquid HbA1C control is conveniently supplied in a liquid ready-to-use format and is ideally suited to both clinical laboratories and POCT helping to significantly reduce preparation time. With a stability of 30 days, waste and costs are also kept to a minimum.

Main Features and Benefits:

Liquid ready-to-use
Human based whole blood
Convenient bi-level pack covering clinically relevant decision levels
Stable to expiry date at  2°C – 8°C
Open vial stability of 30 days at  2°C – 8°C

Week 3: RIQAS HbA1C Programme

RIQAS is the largest international External Quality Assessment Scheme, with more than 40,000 participants in over 124 countries. World renowned for reducing the number of individual programmes required by even the most demanding laboratories, RIQAS covers 360 parameters across 32 flexible multi-parameter programmes.  Effective consolidation in this way will not only deliver real cost savings but free up storage space and ultimately reduce the time spent preparing multiple samples at each survey.

The RIQAS Glycated Haemoglobin (HbA1c) EQA programme is designed to monitor the performance of HbA1c and Total Haemoglobin assays.

Main Features and Benefits:

Accredited to ISO/IEC 17043 designed to meet ISO 15189 requirements
Lyophilised for enhanced stability
100% whole blood ensuring a matrix similar to the patient sample
Monthly reporting allowing identification of any system errors sooner
Submit results and view reports online via RIQAS.Net
Register up to five instruments at no extra cost