Posted by Sten Westgard, MS
In the run-up to the AACC/ASCLS conference in Los Angeles, you may have seen a notice about a free book giveaway. For the first 150 people to come to the SeraCare booth at the Laboratory Exposition, they would receive a free book of their choice (from among the three possible titles: Basic QC Practices, Basic Method Validation, and Six Sigma Risk Analysis).
We expected the event to last the entire day. Do you want to guess how long it actually took before all the books were gone?
We want to thank all the attendees who stood patiently in line, waiting their turn for a book and an opportunity to have it autographed. Dr. Westgard discovered a new statistic: he can sign books at approximately 75 per hour.
Also, special thanks for SeraCare for sponsoring the event. There is a great demand for the basic skills for laboratory quality management out there. But all too often, there are no resources for training and education. Budget cuts and smaller staffs mean that there isn't the money or the time to seek out the needed training. Laboratories are increasingly dependent upon vendors to help fill that widening "skill gap" in their workforce. Thankfully, some companies are willing to help close that gap.
With SeraCare, we expect to collaborate more in the future, particularly in the area of molecular diagnostics and all the novel assays that are coming into our field. "Traditional" QC may not be easy to apply in the molecular world, especially in large arrays of multiplex testing. But the core concepts of quality control still apply, and indeed, are even more important. Bringing disciplined quality management to new fields of testing is one of the next great challenges of the laboratory.
Thanks again to SeraCare and the patient book recipients.