NATA is a signatory to both the ILAC (International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation) and APAC (Asia Pacific Accreditation Cooperation) Mutual Recognition Arrangements (MRAs).
NATA’s involvement in the MRAs provides for the acceptance of reports, certificates and conformity statements issued by NATA accredited facilities.
To maintain its signatory status in the MRAs, NATA’s competence as an accreditation provider is evaluated every four years to ensure its operations remain consistent with international practices specified by ILAC and APAC.
The evaluation process includes the review of NATA’s procedures and records together with witnessing of NATA conducting assessments.
The evaluation of NATA also serves as a much valued independent “check” of our operations by our peers i.e., other signatories.
From 6 March to 10 March 2023, NATA underwent its periodic re-evaluation to have its signatory statuses continued for testing (including medical), calibration, inspection, proficiency testing providers and reference materials producers. An application for entry into the MRA for biobanking was also made.
NATA fared very well with only 2 non-conformities (conditions) and 4 comments (observations) raised. None of the findings were significant and generally reflected improvement opportunities for our well-established procedures. Our existing assessment processes and program structures were well regarded by the evaluation team.
We are pleased to advise that NATA’s signatory statuses will be formally confirmed in the coming months. Additionally, a recommendation will be made to extend our scope to include biobanking.
NATA would like to extend a heartfelt thanks to all the NATA staff who participated in the evaluation activities as well as to the facilities and technical assessors who hosted / participated in the witnessed assessments.