What is accreditation and how is it important?

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Every consumer values confidence in their suppliers because often times they buy products or seek services without thinking twice. However, people should ensure that their suppliers are accredited when choosing legitimate alcohol or drug testing providers. The accreditation process plays a huge role in ensuring that every supplier is credible enough to provide legitimate drug testing products and services.

Many laboratories often get accredited to ensure that they maintain their clients’ confidence in consuming their products and services.

The importance of accreditation

Seeking the services of an accredited laboratory ensures that the services offered at that particular laboratory meets the highest standards set by ISO/IEC 17025:2005- which happens to be an internationally agreed standard for testing laboratories. Alcohol and drug testing laboratories seek accreditation as a means to validate the quality of services and products they offer consumers.

Accredited laboratories should ensure that they maintain a high level of transparency in their operations by offering consumers a wide range of drug testing services that protects consumer rights and by promoting client success which results in professional and qualified drug tests.

The accreditation process involves detailed inspection in the laboratory together with written submission to audit the credibility and legitimacy of the laboratory’s staffing, procedures, equipment and facilities. Drug testing and other measurements should adhere to drug safety considerations and must be carried out in accordance with appropriate protocols. In addition, techniques and equipment must be used with due regard for reliability, validity and calibration.

However, some laboratories fail to adhere to these accreditation standards by offering low quality services to their clients. Basically, they haven’t approached an accreditation body to get audited and receive accreditation.

Independently accredited companies present numerous benefits to their consumers because they assure clients that they are:

  • Performing under sustainable standards
  • Appropriately resourced
  • Technically competent
  • Impartial
  • Performing to the required standard

The Process of Accreditation

Accreditation is the process of informing the public about companies that meet specific standards in their field. The standards for accreditation are set by a peer review board whose members include drug control experts from various accredited hospitals and medical institutions. For example, the board that accredits drug testing laboratories in the UK is the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS). UKAS helps in auditing each potential new laboratory accreditation or the renewals of previously accredited laboratories.

Basically, the external review acts as the focus point of the accreditation process. It equips and energises the stakeholders and leadership of a laboratory or drug testing facility to tackle these areas that may be pulling down their expected performance level.

Over the years, accreditation has been inextricably associated with laboratory system advancement. In other words, the accreditation process requires laboratories and drug testing companies to examine critically their resources, programs, leadership, priorities, strategies and vision. The process of acquiring and maintaining accreditation has continued to provide drug testing facilities and laboratories with compelling and clear guidelines for implementing positive changes into action.

The process is well-known for promoting continuous development in drug testing industry resulting in effective laboratory performance.

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