About AXIO Proficiency Testing schemes
How should I report my results using PORTAL? For the majority of PT schemes, results are returned through our bespoke electronic reporting software, PORTAL. Once you are ready to report your results, please go to: portal.lgcstandards.com You will need to log in using your lab ID, username and password. We advise that prior to using PORTAL you read the user guide which is available at: portal.lgcstandards.com select ‘help’ from the menu. If you require further assistance please contact our support team: Tel: +44 (0)161 762 2500 Email : email@example.com or your local LGC office. For some schemes (or parts of a scheme) alternative reporting mechanisms are provided, details of which will be emailed to participants prior to test materials receipt. It is recommended that results and calculations are checked thoroughly before reporting. Results should be reported clearly, in the format and units detailed in the scheme description. If calculations are used, unless instructed otherwise, the laboratory is to report only the final calculated result. In general, results of zero should not be reported; results should be reported depending upon the detection limit of the method used, for example, <10. The exception is a small number of parameters, where it may be appropriate to report a result of zero, depending on the measurement scale being used. Results of zero and truncated results, such as < or > cannot often be included in the data analysis and therefore allocated a performance score. Results will be rounded up or down to the number of reporting decimal places stipulated in the scheme description and may not therefore be identical to your original reported result. The effects of rounding may also mean that occasionally percentage totals do not add up exactly to 100%. Part of the challenge of proficiency testing is the ability to perform calculations and transcribe results correctly. The proficiency testing team cannot interpret or calculate results on participants’ behalf. Once submitted and received, results cannot be amended and no changes can be made after the report has been issued. However, if you notice an error in your result before the reporting deadline, this can be corrected using PORTAL until the round closes.
How many results may I submit? Although it is desirable for participants to submit multiple results in order to compare results between different analysts, methods or instruments, a single laboratory reporting a large number of results could potentially bias the dataset. In order to minimise the effects of bias, AXIO Proficiency Testing therefore limits the number of results participants are able to report. Each participant is able to enter up to 13 different results. Of these results a maximum of 3 results can be ‘nominated’. Nominated results are included in the statistical analysis of the dataset whilst non-nominated results are not, however all results will receive z performance scores and assessments as appropriate. Nominated results must be obtained using different methods, again to minimise the effects of bias. Further information is available in the PORTAL User Guide and the PORTAL Nominated Results FAQ, both of these documents are available for download from the PORTAL website and further information is available from firstname.lastname@example.org Can my results be included in the report if I’ve missed the deadline for reporting? Participants are asked to return results by the given deadline in order to ensure that their results are included in the statistical analysis and the scheme report. Results received after the closure date will not be included in the report. For PT schemes where a generic report is issued, this is available to all participants subscribing to the round regardless of whether their results were submitted or not. Are microbiology results obtained from MPN methods comparable to those obtained using plate count methods? MPN and plate counts are both estimates of the number of microbial cells in the original test material and therefore provided all dilutions and calculations have been performed correctly, results should be comparable. For QWAS and QMS, comparing MPN results against results obtained from all other methods show no significant differences.
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