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Regional laboratories are receiving help to become accredited and improve their management systems, thanks to a collaborative training effort involving the Barbados National Standards Institution (BNSI), the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), with support from the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida).

The training workshop on ISO/IEC 17025:2017 “General requirement for the competence of testing and calibration laboratories” will be conducted from Tuesday, November 7, to Thursday, November 9, at the Radisson Aquatica Resort, Bay Street, St. Michael, beginning at 9:00 a.m. daily.

Director of the BNSI, Anthea Ishmael, will deliver welcome remarks at the start of the event on November 2, at 9:00 a.m. Technical Officer for Accreditation and Conformity Assessment at the CARICOM Regional Organisation for Standards and Quality, Stephen Farquharson, will be the featured speaker.

Facilitators will include experts from Exova, United Kingdom and from the National Institute of Standards and Technology, United States of America.

With this training, participating laboratories in Barbados and across the region are expected to be one step closer to a comprehensive understanding of the requirements to meet accreditation; to improving their own management systems; as well as maintaining their competence in testing and calibration activities.

Acting Deputy Director of the BNSI, Haydn Rhynd, giving the rationale behind the workshop said: “The programme is especially timely for Barbados, as some laboratories have already received accreditation through assistance offered by the BNSI, while those still on the path to that quality goal will be able to further their own knowledge on what is required given recent updates to the International Standard for general requirements for the competence of testing and calibration laboratories.”

The ISO is an independent, non-governmental international organisation and has members from 165 national standards bodies, including the BNSI, which represents Barbados.  As part of the ISO Action Plan for developing countries 2016-2020, ISO recognises that the increased and effective participation of developing countries is a priority and specific assistance is needed to fully exploit the value of standards in support of this development.

This regional training is a result of the commitment of the ISO, its members and partners to the provision of technical assistance to developing countries and to raising awareness on the role and benefits of International Standards and their use.


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