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How to manage laboratory samples

Jun 02, 2018

Laboratory sample management has been included in the assessment of CMA measurement certification. The management of laboratory samples mainly includes the steps of sample receiving, sample transfer, sample storage, sample processing, and sample identification. The validity and completeness of the test sample directly affect the accuracy of the sample test results.


In order to meet the inspection requirements and to facilitate the review of the inspection results, the following discussion is now carried out on various aspects of the management of the sample in conjunction with the measurement certification work. From the following nine aspects we analyze the sample management of the laboratory:


1 sample collection

The sample should be representative. The results of the samples are used to illustrate the overall situation and make conclusions about the overall situation. Sampling follows the following principles:


a) Representative:

When sampling, special attention should be paid to overcoming and eliminating the influence of various factors to maximize the sample's proximity to the overall situation and ensure that the sample is fully representative of the overall situation.


b) Availability:

In some cases, the sample may not be representative but determined by its availability.


c) Notarization:

Sampling must be impartial and conducted by qualified personnel (persons who have undergone sampling training and are qualified). If necessary, sign the seal together with the person inspected at the site and do a good job of sampling on site. Fill out the sample collection record form and sign the confirmation.

2 sample reception


a) Fill in the power of attorney

Regardless of whether the samples are sampled or submitted, the entrusting party should first fill in the “Sample Inspection Proxy Form, the general power of attorney is in duplicate, one is retained by the testing organization, and one is submitted to the entrusting party as the receipt report certificate.


b) Review of the power of attorney

The receiving personnel shall verify whether the sample inspection proxy is completed, whether there is an empty item, whether the formalities are complete, whether the information is complete, and whether the standard quotation is correct and appropriate.


c) Check sample

Samples should be consistent with the "Sample Inspection Proxy". The sample package should be in good condition. If it is not well documented, it should be recorded. The number of submitted samples shall meet the requirements for inspection, re-inspection, and arbitration. For example, the sample for inspection should be a text description only for the inspection sample.


d) formal acceptance

Sample recipients signed the "Sample Inspection Proxy" and promised to issue a report date.

3 sample number

In order to ensure the traceability of inspection samples, in principle, a sample is given a unique number (CNAS's requirement is to avoid confusion, not to unique number, of course, the unique number must also meet the requirements). Several samples for the same event can be considered as one sample given a number. The sample number can consist of the year, the sample category code, and the sample serial number (or other suitable laboratory number). In order to ensure the uniqueness of the sample number, the sample receiving department is generally responsible for the unified preparation, or the LIMS-equipped laboratory can be generated by the system.


4 sample identification

The identification of samples includes the unique number (sample acceptance number) and the sample's different test status (untested, inspected, checked, retained). The inspection of the sample should have "detected", "qualified" and "failed" logo. The same sample for multiple packages should be subdivided with a bar and a number after the sample acceptance number to ensure the uniqueness of each package. The sample manager is responsible for attaching the identification labels of the samples to the samples one by one.


5 sample transfer

After acceptance of the sample, the contractor will send a “Sample Inspection Transfer Order” to the testing department (personnel) according to the customer's request for sample inspection, and inform the testing room sample administrator to take the sample to be tested. At the time of handover, the condition of the sample shall be checked and the approval shall be signed on the “Sample Inspection Transfer Form.” After the sample is transferred to the testing room, it shall be uniformly registered by the sample manager of the testing room. The untested, inspected and examined samples shall be stored separately. The inspector shall collect the sample. When testing, the sample identification number must not be changed.The sample should be protected during transfer and testing. Avoid non-detectable damage or loss.


6 subcontract sample management

Samples supplied to subcontracted laboratories are to be provided externally, and the integrity of the samples should be checked before delivery. Samples delivered to subcontracted laboratories should receive proofs from the other party. The subcontracting management department shall do a good job of registering subcontracted samples. The subcontractor shall have measures to protect the integrity of the sample, and shall properly mark and keep the sample.

7 Sample storage, storage

Samples should be stored and kept with special samples and suitable facilities. The sample room is in charge of the sample manager and restricts access. Sample storage environment should be safe, non-corrosive, clean and dry and well ventilated, with temperature and humidity monitoring. For samples that are required to be stored under special environmental conditions, environmental conditions should be strictly controlled and environmental conditions should be regularly recorded. Samples shall be carried out in accordance with the prescribed quantities and varieties for use in review and arbitration. Corrosive, flammable, explosive, and toxic hazardous samples should be stored in isolation and marked clearly. The sample manager must carefully check and register the samples for retention, and the samples of different nature should be classified and saved.


8 sample processing

After the report is released, the time for leaving the sample for leaving sample shall not be less than the time for reporting the complaint and the feedback time. If there is a need for exceeding the standard sample and special sample, the time for leaving the sample may be extended. The sample processing shall be processed in the following ways:

(1) The sample requested by the customer will be returned by the customer after the retention period expires. When the customer returns the sample, the sample leader must submit the “Sample Inspection Proxy Book” to the sample room, and the sample administrator should return the sample. When the customer needs to retrieve the sample in advance (within the sample retention period), he/she should sign the sample inspection request letter “without objection to this test report” before the sample administrator can return the sample.

(2) The client's entrusted processing sample for the remaining sample period shall be processed according to the requirements filled in by the customer. The samples that must be monitored must be monitored by the sample manager in accordance with the prescribed methods to prevent environmental pollution and hazards.


9 sample confidentiality


The client's samples, data, data and related information are strictly confidential.