Proficiency Testing - Records Retention

How long should we keep proficiency testing records?

Any examples are for illustrative purposes only
For non-waived testing, the minimum retention requirement is two years for both Joint Commission standards and regulatory compliance. However, non-waived proficiency testing performance is monitored for subsequent unsuccessful status for up to a five year period. In rare instances, a laboratory could be required to provide a Plan of Action for a current unsuccessful event that also addresses any unsuccessful events that occurred in the prior five year period. For this reason, it is recommended that laboratories retain non-waived proficiency testing records by specialty and subspecialty for a five year period, particularly if there has been unsatisfactory or unsuccessful status within that timeframe. If all proficiency testing performance was satisfactory beyond the minimum two year regulatory retention period, then there is probably little value in retaining it longer than the required two years. Note that this recommendation is specifically intended for non-waived testing. Participation in proficiency testing for waived testing is voluntary. Thus the value of retaining waived proficiency testing records beyond two years is at the determination of the laboratory director.
Last updated on June 17, 2020
Manual: Laboratory
Chapter: Quality System Assessment for Nonwaived Testing QSA

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