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July 2017 Newsletter

​NE​​WS

AIHA PAT Programs Expa​nds its ISO/IEC 17043:2010 Accreditation as a Proficiency Testing Provider

 

AIHA PAT Programs expands its PT Provider Accreditation.
L-R: Anthony Hodge, Angela Oler, Kim Bacon, Da​vid Clawson

After a thorough assessment and review of its quality management system and competence to develop and administer specific proficiency testing protocols, AIHA PAT Programs has been granted ISO/IEC 17043 accreditation by the American Association for Laboratory Accreditation (A2LA).

The achievement of A2LA accreditation demonstrates AIHA PAT Programs’ competence to manage and perform the activities defined by its A2LA Scope of Accreditation (Certificate # 3300.01).  These activities include proficiency testing programs in the areas of Industrial Hygiene (IHPAT), Environmental Lead (ELPAT), Bulk Asbestos (BAPAT), Beryllium (BePAT), and both culture and direct examination of Environmental Microbiology (EMPAT) and continues through April 2021.

“We have operated high quality Proficiency Analytical Testing Programs for many years,” said Angela Oler, AIHA PAT Programs’ Director of Operations. “We are thrilled to have achieved accreditation for all the PAT programs. We knew we had strong, stable, and reliable programs and now we have the third-party acknowledgement of our continued quality and commitment to continuous improvement.” 

Technology Transi​tion

IMPORTANT! ACTION REQ​​UIRED

COMING SOON - New Data Portal

AIHA PAT Programs is moving into a new data management system within the next few months. Please take the time to ensure that you have saved a copy of all pertinent PAT Reports out of the respective data portal. Once the transition takes place, only reports that have been generated in the new system will be available for download.

Download locations (login required):

BePAT: https://aiha.rti.org/BEPAT/index.cfm 
BAPAT: https://aiha.rti.org/home2.cfm 
ELPAT Air: http://portal.aihapat.org/apps/pages/external/roundListing.aspx?programId=67 
ELPAT: http://portal.aihapat.org/apps/pages/external/roundListing.aspx?programId=66 
EMPAT Direct Exam: http://webprograms.appenv.com/fungaldirect/
IHPAT: http://portal.aihapat.org/apps/pages/external/roundListing.aspx?programId=70 
IHPAT Diffusive Sampler: http://portal.aihapat.org/apps/pages/external/roundListing.aspx?programId=78 

IHPAT Asbestos Round 209 and Asbestos Survey

The PAT Board’s decision not to score IHPAT 209 Asbestos Samples 1 and 3 was done after much deliberation and data review. As stated in the technical comment on the IHPAT 209 report, the reference mean was significantly different than the quality control mean for both samples.

In reviewing the population results as a whole, by batch, it is clear that the distribution of the data does not approximate a normal distribution. 

 
In an effort to further investigate the distribution of data, we are requesting the assistance of IHPAT Asbestos participants. If you are a current IHPAT Asbestos participant, please help us, and the program, by taking a short, anonymous survey. The survey covers sample preparation, microscope filter, test slide type and usage, and sample characteristics. 

Take the survey!

PAT Board M​eeting

 

AIHA PAT Programs Board 2017-2018 and AIHA PAT Staff*
Back L-R: K. Bacon*, L. Youmans, S. VanEtten, D. Popp, N. Brassard, J. Scott, D. Clawson*
Front L-R: A. Oler*, C. Ostrowski, P. Slaiman, M. Ballard, K. Swami, P. Fallah
Not pictured: A. Hodge*, A. Hata

 
April 27–28 the AIHA PAT Board met at the AIHA PAT offices in Falls Church, VA. The agenda covered items such as additional PT offerings, method data review, participant feedback, and technical operations. The meeting was very productive. Many action items were developed and all of them will help improve the quality of the PAT Programs.

Have you considered submitting an application for PAT Board membership? You should! We are already thinking about the process for the 2018 class of PAT Board members. Additional information – including Governance, Duties and Responsibilities, and Application – can be found on our Volunteer Leadership​ page. 

Reference to Proficiency​ Testing in Advertising 

Do you use your AIHA PAT Programs participation as a marketing tool? Are you aware you can use your participation as a marketing tool? Per the AIHA PAT Programs Participation Policies, Section 2.1.14 – Advertising, you can use the following approved language:

“__________ (participant name) participates in the AIHA _____ (IHPAT, EMPAT, BePAT, etc.) Proficiency Analytical Testing Program, Participant Number _______”. (Blanks are to be filled in with applicable terms.) 

Please note that any other use of these terms or any variation in terminology requires prior AIHA PAT Programs approval. As you are aware, AIHA PAT Programs are not an accreditation program or a certification program. Participants may use their participant number to indicate participation in the AIHA PAT Programs, as long as “accreditation” or “certification” is not implied and the guidelines above are followed.

Request for Proposal I​ssued

AIHA PAT Programs has issued a Request for Proposal (RfP) for the IHPAT, IHPAT Diffusive Sampler, and ELPAT-Air programs. The RfP covers sample generation, verification, storage, and shipping. An RfP is routinely issued as the end of the current contract approaches and the new contract will be in place for IHPAT Round 212, opening January 1, 2018. The RfP can be reviewed here (PDF) and proposals are due Monday, July 31, by 5 p.m. Please feel free to share this information with any organizations you think might be a good fit for IHPAT sample generation. You may direct any RfP questions to Angela Oler, Director of Operations, via email.

Scheme Plan​s Posted

Please note: We have released the initial version of the formal BAPAT, BePAT, and EMPAT Scheme Plans. Each Scheme Plan can be found on the respective Program page in the right navigation section, below the FAQ’s. Click here.


​FEATURED PROGRAM

​Beryllium Proficiency Analytical Testing (BePAT) Program

The BePAT Program serves as an external quality assurance program for laboratories analyzing beryllium on filter media. The program is designed to assist laboratories in evaluating analytical performance. Samples are shipped for analysis to participating laboratories on a tri-annual basis. Statistical analyses are performed on the resulting data. An evaluation report is provided to each laboratory allowing each participant to determine their current capability level and compare to an industry standard. The program is specifically recommended for laboratories an​alyzing samples for the Department of Energy in accordance with the Chronic Beryllium Disease Prevention Program as specified in 10 CFR Part 850.24, Section (f) Periodic Exposure Monitoring, Analysis. While participation is open to all laboratories, any foreign entity must meet U.S. federal export requirements.


ARTICLES OF INTEREST 

Blood tests significantly underestimated lead levels, FDA and CDC warn

By Laurie McGinley

Washington Post, May 17, 2017


FAQ FROM PAT THIS ​QUARTER 

What are the criteria used for rating my perform​ance in the BePAT Program?

Results determined to be within 75%–125% of the "accepted value" are rated as acceptable. Data outside of this range are rated as not acceptable. The "accepted value" is determined by theoretical calculations and is confirmed by statistical analysis of reference laboratory data. Blank data are not assigned ratings. The laboratory shall receive a pass/fail score for each BePAT round. The laboratory shall receive a passing score if three (3) of four (4) reported results are acceptable or not more than 25 percent of reported results are outliers.


​IMPORTANT DATES

  • 7/12/2017 EMPAT Direct Exam 51 - Round Closes
  • 7/14/2017 BAPAT 112 - Round Enrollment Due
  • 7/14/2017 ELPAT Air 99 Retest - Retest Results Post
  • 7/14/2017 IHPAT 209 Retest - Results Post
  • 7/20/2017 BAPAT 111 Retest - Retest Enrollment Due​

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Updated: 7/26/2017 2:40 PM