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Pathology accreditation

70 percent of NHS diagnoses are based on results from Pathology laboratories, therefore trusting those results is critical.

Quality assurance

All laboratories within the Pathology and Laboratory Directorate are inspected annually by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) against international standards (ISO15189 medical laboratories - Quality and Competence) and have achieved accreditation.

Accreditation provides quality assurance, requiring strict procedures to ensure staffing, equipment, reagents and tests/examinations are fit for purpose and monitored. It assures service users of a structured management system and that all tests used are quality controlled.

Change management procedures ensure that new tests are validated and verified before use, and are reviewed at the next inspection to formally accredit new tests.

All tests offered by any Pathology Service will have gone through a thorough verification process to check that the test works as expected and the results are meaningful.

Accredited and non-accredited tests

A UKAS accredited test means the process that occurred within the relevant laboratory to ensure the test is fit for purpose (quality assurance) has been reviewed by UKAS and ratified.

A non-accredited test has been quality assured by the relevant department, but the test has been introduced between inspections. The test will have been shown to be fit for purpose but the quality assurance process itself has not yet had the final sign-off from UKAS.

A non-accredited test is safe, and will have been subjected to rigorous in-house verification testing before being offered to service users. It is simply awaiting UKAS oversight of the verification process.

Departments may have a very small number of tests that will not be UKAS accredited - these will be clearly marked as such and still subject the same quality assurance processes as any other test offered.

For the accreditation details for each laboratory, please visit:

Who's Accredited? - UKAS

UKAS numbers

  • Biochemistry 8202
  • Cellular Pathology 8415 and 8683
  • Haematology 8464
  • Immunology 8782
  • Medical Genetics 8694
  • Microbiology 8639
  • Neuropathology 9642
Last reviewed:30 May 2022