Public Hospital lab gains Standards Bureau certification

Stabroek News
January 11, 2003

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The Central Medical Laboratory of the Georgetown Public Hospital yesterday gained certification from the Guyana National Bureau of Standards (GNBS).

Director of the Guyana National Bureau of Standards, Chatterpaul Ramcharran (centre with shirt-jac) hands over the Standards certificate to Director of Medical Laboratory Services at the Georgetown Hospital, Dr Madan Rambarran, in the Central Medical Laboratory of the Georgetown Public Hospital

It was the seventh such lab to be certified and comes three years after the idea to seek the GNBS Standard was tabled by the hospital administration.

At a presentation ceremony in the laboratory, Director of the GNBS Chatterpaul Ramcharran said it was a significant achievement that the lab has been certified by the Bureau, as it was the first public laboratory to get the accreditation.

Plans are underway to have all public hospital labs certified by the end of 2004.

Present too at the event were Minister of Health, Dr. Leslie Ramsammy; Michael Khan, Chief Executive Officer of the Georgetown Public Hospital; Evadne Fields, Head, Information Services (ag) GNBS; Candelle Walcott, Technical Officer, GNBS Laboratory Certification Programme; and Dr. Madan Rambarran, Director, Medical Laboratory Services.

In giving the feature address, Ramsammy said the certification was challenging because it was the largest medical laboratory in the country, with the largest staff, and the largest number of people using it.

Dr. Rambarran said it was the only lab that has a Scientific Director, as it needed to ensure quality at all times.

The certification is renewed on an annual basis, pending audits by the Bureau to ascertain whether standards are being maintained.

The lab was presented with the GYS 170:1998 - General Requirements for the Operation of a Laboratory - a Standard published by the Bureau in 1998.

This standard outlines procedures to be followed in testing, calibration and documentation. The Standard also deals with organisation and management, equipment, personnel, accommodation and environmental conditions, testing methods, requests for tests/calibration, handling of test items and reporting test results, assuring the quality of tests and calibration results, control of non-conformity, and testing and calibration work.

As dictated by the Standard, manuals have been developed by staff of the lab to be used as reference resources.

The lab does testing on a 24-hour basis in three areas: Biochemistry, Haematology and Microbiology. Results of these tests are reported within 12 to 24 hours of testing unless urgently required, in which case results are ready in one hour.

The area of Biochemistry includes blood glucose testing, liver function, urine chemistry and lipid profile. Microbiology testing includes parasitology, micro-scopy and cultures.

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