Notes from EQALM 2023

EQALM’s Annual Symposium took place in Lyon, France this year, and CMPT Chair Dr. Lucy Perrone was in attendance. During the two-day conference, Dr. Perrone presented CMPT research and took part in the working group on microbiology, as did former CMPT chair Dr. Michael Noble.

An organization that supports providers of external quality analysis (EQA) for laboratories, EQALM enables EQA providers in Europe to exchange ideas and share learnings about quality-related matters, especially regarding EQA programs in Europe. CMPT has been a member of EQALM for many years, and continues to share with and learn from other EQALM members.

This year, Dr. Perrone presented two abstracts by CMPT interns Jennifer Wu and Anna Malikovskaia. Wu’s research evaluates the performance of clinical laboratories according to the testing methods they used, drawing on five years of data from labs participation in proficiency testing programs. An oral presentation of Malikovskaia’s work covered variability in training among EQA providers themselves. The research reveals that there is an opportunity for EQA providers to standardize training methods and develop common training protocols.

Point of Care testing was a topic of much discussion, especially surrounding the insight that EQA providers have into which methods perform better than others and how data from EQA programs can inform health authority policies governing POCT as it becomes more common. An upcoming paper by CMPT’s Veronica Restelli in PLOS Global Public Health will present an analysis of data collected through our COVID-19 proficiency testing program, and the observed effectiveness of point-of-care testing from the perspective on an EQA providers.

We look forward to seeing EQALM members at the 2024 symposium in Vienna!

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