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National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL)

Accreditation is the formal certification, authorisation and registration of a laboratory which has proven its capacity, competence and reputation to perform the tasks it claims to be able to perform. This offers laboratories input on how they are carryin

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Introduction

Accreditation is the formal certification, authorization, and registration of a laboratory which has proven its capacity, competence and reputation to perform the tasks it claims to be able to perform. This offers laboratory input on how they are carrying out their work according to international scientific competence requirements. An autonomous body under the agies of the department of sciences and technology, the government of India, and is registered under the societies act is known as NABL (National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories)

NABL has been approved by Indian Govt. as the sole accreditation body for laboratory testing and calibration. NABL's goal is to include qualitative and technical competence evaluation by third parties.

NABL established relations with international bodies four years ago-Asia Pacific Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation and International Cooperation in Laboratory Accreditation. This has imparted international recognition to NABL accredited laboratories. The international standard currently followed by NABL is ISO 15189, specifically for medical laboratories.

NABL accreditation is not mandatory it's voluntary in nature, labs may or may not apply for NABL accreditation

Benefits of Accreditation

  1. Potential increase in business due to enhanced customer and satisfaction
  2. Saving in terms of time and money due to the reduction or elimination of the need for re-testing of products
  3. Better control of laboratory operations and feedback to laboratories as to whether they have a sound quality assurance system and are technologically qualified
  4. Customers can search and find NABL approved laboratories for their specific requirements from the NABL website or Approved Laborator's Directory
  5. In both domestic and foreign markets, consumers of certified laboratories enjoy greater access to their goods.
  6. Time and money savings due to reducing or eliminating the need to re-test the goods.

NABL required for

  1. Those laboratories which undertake any short or calibrated in the specified field
  2. Any government or private laboratories
  3. Multi-field small or large operation labs
  4. Mobile labs, temporary labs

Process of accreditation

 

  1. Prepare application for NABL accreditation, providing all the required information and enlisting the tests/ calibrations along with range and measurement uncertainty for which laboratory has the competence to perform. Labs can apply all or parts of their testing/calibration facilities in formats NABL 151, 152, 153.
  2. The laboratory has to take care in the filing of the application, the scope of accreditation for which application is filed. If any clause is not applicable to labs, it shall furnish the reason
  3. Labs should submit 5 sets of duly filled application forms for each field of testing/calibration along with 5 sets of quality manual and application fees.
  4. On receipt of the application, NABL secretaries will issue acknowledgment to the applicant lab and do the scrutiny of application in all respect. A unique customer registration number will be allocated to the applicant lab for further processing of the application.
  5. A lead assessor for giving adequacy reports on the quality manual will be nominated by the NABL secretary. A copy of the adequacy report by lead assessor will be provided to labs for taking necessary corrective action if any.
  6. A pre-assessment audit of labs will be organized by NABL.
  7. The lead assessor will provide a copy of the consolidated report of the assessment to the laboratory and sent the original copy NABL secretariats.     
  8. Pre-assessment helps labs for final assessment.
  9. The pre-assessment report will provide labs for taking necessary corrective action on the concern raised during audit.
  10. Labs should submit corrective measures action report to the secretary
  11. After this final assessment will take place by NABL authority
  12. In the final audit, if all conditions are fulfilled authority will grant the accreditation
  13. Accreditation will valid for 3 years and NABL will conduct periodical surveillance of accredited lab
  14. In within 6 months from the expiry date of accreditation labs should apply for renewal of accreditation
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