Laboratory Practice Standards and Guidelines
LABORATORY PRACTICE STANDARDS AND GUIDELINES
Any laboratory that performs tests which aid in determining an appropriate treatment or action for an illness or disease must establish practice standards and guidelines. Each laboratory procedure should include criteria for acceptable samples or specimens; a list of equipment, supplies, and reagents required; detailed step-by-step instructions for the testing procedure itself; and a list of the quality control procedures to be included, the results to be reported, and the interpretations of those results. Since some tests may require immediate action, protocol should also include directions on reporting details. Guidelines for reporting results to government agencies as required under local or state laws are also established.
In order to protect individuals and sensitive information, strict confidentiality guidelines should be developed for reporting results. These confidentiality guidelines should include disciplinary actions to be taken if protocols are not followed. Guidelines are also established regarding the interpretation of quality control results and corrections that need to be made if results are not accurate. Additionally, practice standards for the laboratory may include safety procedures to be followed and guidelines for actions to be taken should laboratory accidents occur. In order to document that appropriate actions and procedures have been followed within the laboratory, standard practices should also include guidelines for the length of time that all records and documentation of corrective actions should be kept within the laboratory, and for computer back-up procedures.
Kathleen L. Meckstroth
(see also: Assurance of Laboratory Testing Quality; Diagnostic Testing for Communicable Disease; Laboratory Services; Laboratory Technician; Reference Laboratory )
"Laboratory Practice Standards and Guidelines." Encyclopedia of Public Health. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 22, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/education/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/laboratory-practice-standards-and-guidelines
"Laboratory Practice Standards and Guidelines." Encyclopedia of Public Health. . Retrieved October 22, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/education/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/laboratory-practice-standards-and-guidelines
Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).
Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.
Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:
Modern Language Association
The Chicago Manual of Style
American Psychological Association
- Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
- In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.