Significance and Use
4.1 An accountability and quality control system is established by laboratory management to improve the quality of its results. It provides documented records which serve to assure users of the laboratory's services that a specified level of precision is achieved in the routine performance of its measurements and that the data reported were obtained from the samples submitted. The system also provides for: early warning to analysts when methods or equipment begin to develop a bias or show deterioration of precision; the protection and retrievability of data (results); traceability and control of samples as they are processed through the laboratory; good communication of sample information between submitters, analysts, and supervision; and information on sample processing history. This guide describes such a system. Other accountability and quality control programs can be developed. Such programs can be equivalent to the program in this guide if they provide all of the benefits mentioned above.
1.1 This guide covers the essential aspects of an accountability and quality control program for a chemical analysis laboratory. The reasons for establishing and operating such a program are discussed.
1.2 This international standard was developed in accordance with internationally recognized principles on standardization established in the Decision on Principles for the Development of International Standards, Guides and Recommendations issued by the World Trade Organization Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Committee.
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