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Quality assurance in anti-HIV testing.


Int Conf AIDS. 1989 Jun 4-9;5:924 (abstract no. E.730). Unique

OBJECTIVE: To document the high quality of anti-HIV testing performed by laboratories participating in external proficiency testing programs. METHODS: The College of American Pathologists and the American Association of Blood Banks jointly sponsor a proficiency testing program for laboratories testing for antibody to human immunodeficiency virus (anti-HIV). Panels of 5 samples each are mailed quarterly to approximately 1000 subscribers. Participants are provided with a report summarizing results by test method and reagent manufacturer. RESULTS: Over the past 3 years greater than 98% of laboratories reporting ELISA screening methods have correctly identified anti-HIV reactive samples. Reports from laboratories using Western blot confirmation methods also show greater than 95% agreement on reactive samples. Non-reactive samples were correctly identified by greater than 99% of laboratories reporting confirmatory testing while those using only ELISA screening tests were more likely to report false positive results. Some variability in sensitivity and/or specificity of both ELISA and Western blot test reagents can be documented. CONCLUSION: Laboratories participating in external proficiency testing programs maintain a high level of performance. These programs are useful in monitoring lab performance and allow comparison with others using similar methods and reagents.

Blotting, Western Diagnosis, Laboratory/*STANDARDS Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay HIV Antibodies/*ANALYSIS HIV Infections/*DIAGNOSIS HIV Seropositivity/*DIAGNOSIS/PSYCHOLOGY *Quality Control ABSTRACT


Information in this article was accurate in September 30, 1990. The state of the art may have changed since the publication date. This material is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between you and your doctor. Always discuss treatment options with a doctor who specializes in treating HIV.