Episode 4: EQA
Diagnostics: Beyond the Lab
In this episode of Diagnostics: Beyond the Lab we talk to Daniel Taylor from 1WA, Danielle Casey from API; and Heidi Berghäll from Labquality, about a range of topics including the lab accreditation process, the importance of EQA/PT programs, new challenges and future trends in the industry, and more.
Hosts & Guests
Daniel G. Taylor
Meet the Guests
Daniel G. Taylor
Daniel G. Taylor is co-founder and CEO of Oneworld Accuracy (1WA), is a social enterprise group headquartered in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. We have a European office in Messina, Italy and an African office in Lagos, Nigeria. An Asian office is planned for Manilla, Philippines to support a national EQA initiative to have all national reference laboratories with legislated EQA responsibility adopt OASYS (Oneworld Accuracy System) to manage all EQA. We’re guided by the conviction that accurate medical tests are a fundamental human right for all people in all countries as they enable doctors to make proper decisions, so patients receive proper care.
We invite governments to own the challenge of achieving testing accuracy in their countries and become Collaboration Members, that is EQA providers. We give them all the tools they need – informatics, samples, training to make their own samples, logistics support, mentoring to attain their own ISO 17043 accreditation and the collective experience of their international EQA provider peers.
What makes us unique is that we help countries start or improve national EQA programs inaccordance the WHO manual for organizing national EQA. Public health institutes, national reference laboratories and ministries of health (whom we call Leadership Members) run national EQA programs. If Leadership Members are not ready, then we advance EQA through commercial groups (whom we call Associate Members) so that Leadership Members can get head start when EQA becomes a public health priority.
Danielle Casey holds a bachelor’s degree in Clinical Laboratory Science from Michigan State University and an MBA from Davenport University. She began her career working in hospital clinical laboratories, first as a generalist, then specializing in Microbiology and Immunology testing. In 2015, she switched gears and began working for American Proficiency Institute, which provides proficiency testing for all areas of clinical laboratory medicine to over 20,000 laboratories.
In her role at API, Danielle’s areas of expertise include Microbiology and Molecular Diagnostics. She has been instrumental in researching, developing, and implementing over 30 new proficiency testing programs for API. Some of these include 9 molecular multiplex programs to keep up with the ever-changing field of molecular testing. The most recent additions are a Urinary Tract Infection Panel and a Nail Infection Panel, both of which were the first of their kind in the world. She is experienced at working with laboratories, device manufacturers, and sample providers to troubleshoot problems / find answers to complex questions.
Danielle is an active member of the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP), American Society for Microbiology (ASM), Association for Molecular Pathology (AMP) and American Association of Clinical Chemistry (AACC). She has co-authored a published paper and presented at conferences including ASM and AACC.
Heidi Berghäll, PhD, EuSpLM, joined Labquality, a Finnish service provider focusing on providing external quality assurance (EQA) for medical laboratories and point-of-care sites, as R&D Manager in 2018. Her main responsibilities are in managing new EQA project and developing new clinically relevant services. She has gained experience in laboratory medicine working as a Clinical Biochemist at the Turku University Hospital Laboratory where she also did her specialist training. She earned her PhD in Virology from the Faculty of Medicine, University of Turku, Finland in 2008.
Heidi is passionate about developing clinically relevant EQA products to be used to support and improve the quality of laboratories and POCT sites all over the world.