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ACB Welcomes the 'Pathology Quality Assurance Review'

28/01/2014 11:01:00

Joint Statement from the Association for Clinical Biochemistry and Laboratory Medicine, the Institute of Biomedical Science and the Royal College of Pathologists on the Pathology Quality Assurance Review


The Royal College of Pathologists, Institute of Biomedical Science and Association for Clinical Biochemistry and Laboratory Medicine welcome today’s publication of this national review of quality systems in the UK’s clinical pathology services.

In late 2012 NHS England’s Medical Director, Professor Sir Bruce Keogh, commissioned this review, following discussion with key stakeholders, when concerns were expressed regarding the quality of some test results which consequently raised questions about the state and the understanding of quality systems nationally.

A Review Group was established and chaired by Dr Ian Barnes, the previous National Clinical Director for Pathology. It was tasked with assessing the NHS quality framework and governance in pathology services. It has gathered evidence from a wide range of organisations, individuals and the public, examined expectations of pathology services, identified areas for improvement and recommended a system-wide way forward in practice and training. The leading role of pathology in quality systems in the NHS and the international repute of UK pathology’s quality standards are understood. Indeed, the recommendations build on the progress made by its professional staff and organisations over the past 50 years of service.

In recognising the excellence of this work, the report also identifies that the professionals responsible for this progress are the ones best placed to develop quality systems further. This is an opportunity for all professionals and their representative bodies to work together, with NHS England and the devolved health administrations to ensure that pathology services continually improve and that commissioning has a rational basis. This will require strong professional leadership and a great deal of work from many individuals, including representatives of patients’ interests. We believe that our professions are equal to this task.

Joint Statement released by the ACB, IBMS & RCPath

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