As you can see from this issue, we’ve made some important changes to NATA News. It’s now an e-newsletter that makes it easier to view article summaries and to access the full articles you’d like to read. It will also be sent to you six times a year instead of quarterly.
On 9 June we will celebrate World Accreditation Day, the annual event that puts accreditation into the spotlight and raises the public’s awareness of its global importance.
This year’s theme is ‘Delivering confidence in the provision of energy’, and we intend to demonstrate the crucial link between accreditation and having the reliable energy sources we too often take for granted.
NATA’s eighth annual competition to award the Young Scientists of the Year is now underway. Our aim as always is to encourage students to look at how science impacts on people’s lives.
This year the theme is ‘Energy in our lives’ which ties in with the global theme of World Accreditation Day. We’ve invited every primary school in every state and territory to submit a science project based on this topic and look forward to receiving the entries from children aged 7-12 years old across Australia.
As we approach the midpoint of 2014 I am pleased to report that the Association continues to perform well financially. The proceeds from last year’s sale of NCS International have been securely invested and, as intended, provide us with essential support for long-term security.
Thanks to the success of our program to control expenditure the NATA Board has again been able to limit the increase in the annual membership fee. The 2.9% increase for 2014-15 is once again below the target based on a composite index of CPI and Average Weekly Ordinary Times Earnings (AWOTE) and is the same percentage increase that was applied in the 2013-14 financial year.
It is pleasing to announce that NATA has been granted approval as an accreditor for the National Safety and Quality Health Service Standards (NSQHS). We will be offering assessments to our accredited pathology laboratories, medical imaging practices and sleep disorder services from July. The major advantages for our members are firstly, a better understanding of the applicability or otherwise of the NSQHS to the pathology, imaging and sleep disorder services and, secondly, a potential reduction in the number of accreditation visits.
Our project to improve our scopes of accreditation is well underway. From March, we have started to collect the necessary information to populate a scope of accreditation for each facility in the new tabular format. The aim of this work is to have scopes which are more uniform in presentation, have the level of detail required by facilities and their stakeholders and customers (which may differ from facility to facility) and can be searched for on the NATA website more easily and by more attributes. This is not a short term undertaking and requires major changes to our IT system. Your assistance in supplying the requested information at your next reassessment or surveillance visit is appreciated.
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER