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DIAG206-0608: Quality Management for the Veterinary Clinical Pathology Laboratory, Part I

Kathleen P. Freeman, DVM, BS, MS, PhD, DipECVCP, MRCPath, MRCVS, Certificate in Laboratory Quality Management (University of Wisconsin). In conjunction with the European College for Veterinary Clinical Pathology, Committee for Laboratory Standards
Kendal Harr, DVM, MS, DipACVP, Florida Veterinary Pathology Consultants, Inc.
Asger Lundorff Jensen, Professor, DVM, PhD, DrVetMed, DiplECVCP, DiplECVIM-Ca, Head of Veterinary Studies (Bachelor's programme), Head of Veterinary Studies (Master's programme), Central Laboratory Dept. Small Animal Clinical Sciences Faculty of Life Sciences, University of Copenhagen Groennegaardsvej

June 8 - September 14, 2008
Interactive sessions: Sundays, June 8, 22, July 6, 20, August 3, 17, 31; 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm ET (USA)

The course, "Quality Management for the Veterinary Clinical Pathology Laboratory," is designed to provide an introduction to and practical application of quality management in the veterinary clinical pathology laboratory. It is given in one 14-week and one 12-week part (Part I and Part II). Part I is a prerequisite for Part II.

In Part I, participants will be introduced to theories of management and concepts vital to quality planning. Examples of ISO-based and GLP standards will be included. Laboratory design, Westgard Rules, QC Validation and Sigma Metrics will be covered.

In Part II, participants will study personnel specifications, job descriptions, training records and employee appraisals, learn about audits in the veterinary clinical pathology laboratory and determination of reference intervals. Improvement Opportunities, external Quality Assurance performance and a Quality Plan for the laboratory are the final topics in Part II.

There will be real-time sessions every other week. The majority of the work will be done by e-mail of drafts and revisions to the instructors, with the final products of some sections shared with the rest of the participants by posting on the course message boards. The review and participant questions will also be shared on the course message boards. In order to demonstrate satisfactory participation in this course, participants are expected to attend all of the real-time sessions, hand in completed homework assignments and to work with the instructor(s) in revising assigned items until both the instructor(s) and participant are satisfied with the results, as well as pass the examination with a score of at least 60%.

There is some flexibility in the length of time of the course to accommodate holidays for the Instructors and participants. These should be arranged in advance between the instructor and the participants assigned to him/her.


At the end of Part I of this course, the participants should:

  1. Understand and demonstrate knowledge by examination of current concepts of laboratory quality management, including Total Quality Management, LEAN and Six Sigma.

  2. Understand and demonstrate knowledge by examination of ISO and GLP-based standards applicable to testing in veterinary clinical pathology laboratories.

  3. Understand and demonstrate knowledge by examination of concepts underlying veterinary clinical pathology laboratory design and what a veterinary clinical pathology laboratory should look like.

  4. Know how to write Standard Operating Procedures(SOP) and Policies for the veterinary clinical pathology laboratory and show how to do this by developing a list of Policies and SOPs for a depart of his/her choice, writing a SOP for am SOP, a Policy and SOP for a process of his/her choice.

  5. Know how to apply Westgard Rules to determine acceptability of QC data and show how to do this by analyzing data from an instrument within his/her laboratory.

  6. Know how to conduct Quality Control (QC) Validation and show how to do this by analyzing data from a particular instrument within his/her laboratory and making recommendations for QC based on his/her findings.

  7. Know how to use and determine sigma metrics for various laboratory tests and show how to do this by analyzing data and determining sigma metrics for an instrument within his/her laboratory and making recommendations for quality assurance based on his/her findings.

  8. Share their thoughts, experiences, comments and work with others in the course in order to contribute to better understanding of the topics and appreciation of the approaches taken by others to similar or different laboratory circumstances.

  9. Successfully pass an examination with multiple choice, short answer and/or essay questions regarding the above topics by achieving a score of > or = 60%
Course Outline:

Week 1: Introduction to Concepts of Total Quality Management, LEAN management and Six Sigma Management

Week 2: Introduction to Quality Planning and Quality Standards (no Week 2 real-time session)

Week 3: What should a veterinary clinical pathology laboratory look like? Laboratory Design

Week 4: Policies and Standard Operating Procedures (no Week 4 real-time session)

Week 5 and 6: Westgard Rules (no Week 6 real-time session)

Week 7, 8, 9 and 10: QC Validation and Sigma Metrics (no Week 8 or 10 real-time session)

Week 11 and 12: Additional Revision (no Week 12 real-time session)

Week 13: Review, Discussion, Questions and Sharing

Week 14: Examination (no Week 14 real-time session)

Discussions will begin on the start date of the course and continue for 7 days following the last real-time session.

CE HOURS: 10.5 CE Credits

Member and Non-Member/$800 by May 25, 2008;
Member and Non-Member/$1000 after May 25, 2008.
*Course registration is via instructor permission only. Please email for more details before registering for this course. Course not open to veterinary students.

Required Textbook: None

Recommended Textbook: None

For More Information on VIN's Upcoming CE Courses, check out

Note: "This course has been approved for 10.5 hours of continuing education credit in jurisdictions which recognize AAVSB RACE approval; however participants should be aware that some boards have limitations on the number of hours accepted in certain categories and/or restrictions on certain methods of delivery of continuing education. Call VIN at 1-800-700-4636 for further information."

COURSE WITHDRAWAL AND REFUND POLICY: Withdrawal prior to the listed start date of a course entitles the registrant to a complete refund or a credit toward a future VIN CE course, whichever is preferred. Withdrawal within 1 week after the listed start date (i.e. including no more than one real-time session) entitles the registrant to a credit toward any future VIN CE course. (Does not apply to courses with only one real-time session.) After the first real-time session, a registrant may withdraw due to special circumstances and receive prorated credit towards a future VIN course. These requests will be handled on an individual basis. The amount of the prorated credit will be determined based on 65% of the time remaining in the course at the time of withdrawal. It is not possible to withdraw retroactively. Note: To ensure rapid handling of your request for withdrawal, we recommend that you call the VIN office at 1-800-700-INFO.

Debbie Friedler
Continual Education Division
Veterinary Information Network


800.700.4636  |  |  530.756.4881  |  Fax: 530.756.6035
777 West Covell Blvd, Davis, CA 95616

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