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Monday 22 July 2019
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Accreditation not mandatory


TT Bureau of Standards (TTBS) executive director Theodore Reddock yesterday said accreditation of laboratories in TT is not mandatory. Reddock made this comment in response to a question from Independent Senator Melissa Ramkissoon during a public hearing held by the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) with representatives of the TTBS and the Trade and Industry Ministry at Tower D of the Port of Spain International Centre.

Reddock said accreditation of laboratories is voluntary. He said environmental laboratories in TT are accredited. Theodore once some laboratories in a particular field become accredited, the rest follow suit. Reddock said this is something the TTBS is looking at. PAC chairman Dr Bhoendradatt Tewarie said particularly attention should be paid towards ensuring that medical laboratories in TT are accredited.

Housing Minister Randall Mitchell underscored this point as he indicated there is a possibility of someone going into certain laboratories, “and you are misdiagnosed.” Reddock said the Bureau works directly with laboratories, companies and their clients in this regard. TTBS chairman Lawford Dupres said the issue of accreditation of laboratories is, “an issue of extreme concern” to the Bureau.

Dupres said this process should be “driven from above” and hoped the proposed National Quality Policy will assist in the accreditation of laboratories in TT Trade and Industry Ministry Permanent Secretary Norris Herbert shared this view and said the policy is currently before Cabinet. Mitchell noted the TTBS has projected revenue of $4 million in its 2018 estimates.

He asked where would this revenue come from. Reddock said this would come from mainly from inspections, including new inspections which TTBS is bringing on stream.

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