Evaluating Laboratory Quality
Caroline C. Reynolds - Remediation Technologies, Inc. (SSA Journal Volume 4 Number 2 - May 1990 pp. 22 - 24 )

An outside audit should be performed on any laboratory which regularly analyzes samples that measure regulatory parameters or product quality. A visual inspection of the instrument and records is the best method fro determining whether the instruments listed in the statement of qualifications are operable and properly maintained, and whether quality assurance measures are being performed as required. Earlier article sin this series discussed how to plan a sampling and analysis program (SSA Journal, February 1989) and how to choose a laboratory to analyze the sample (ibid, September 1989). Since important decisions depend on the results of your sample analyses, it is important to ascertain that the samples are being properly handled and analyzed. To do this a laboratory audit should be performed. If you are familiar with laboratory methods and instruments, you may plan and conduct the audit yourself, otherwise you should engage an experienced laboratory auditor.