CLSI volunteer, Charles E. Hill, MD, PhD, Director, Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, traveled to Seoul, South Korea in April 2014 to speak on behalf of CLSI at The Asian Society for Clinical Pathology and Laboratory Medicine Congress (ASCPaLM 2014) during The Korean Society for Laboratory Medicine (KSLM) annual Spring Symposium.
Dr. Hill spoke about performance evaluation of molecular tests. He discussed basic concepts of establishing performance characteristics, qualitative and quantitative tests, strategies related to validation of new tests, as well as ongoing evaluation through quality control and quality assurance. He mentioned while in South Korea, he noticed a difference in governmental oversight for molecular pathology. The biggest surprise to him was that all of the tests in South Korea must go through governmental regulatory oversight, so no laboratory-developed tests exist. Therefore hospitals and laboratories in that country rely more heavily on commercially available tests, which means they do more performance verification rather than validation.
This was Dr. Hill’s first trip to Asia and specifically South Korea. He was taken on a guided tour of Seoul, arranged by Hyosoon Park, MD, International Director at KSLM, along with the other international visitors. He learned about Korean history while he visited royal palaces, viewed the Blue House from afar, walked around the Namdaemun Market, toured the Korean Ginseng Center, and enjoyed a traditional Korean lunch.
Dr. Hill also was able to connect with a former colleague and Korean native, Sharon Lim, who arranged for him to speak at the Korean National Cancer Center. He also spoke at Konkuk University Medical Center during his visit.
Dr. Hill is an active CLSI member and volunteer on the Consensus Committee on Molecular Methods. As a volunteer on that committee, he thoroughly enjoys reviewing and editing drafts of Molecular Methods standards in their development stages.
He noted that his clinical practice is molecular pathology, and therefore he has, “a vested interest in how we do a lot of this work.” He added, “I’m very conscious of wanting to have high quality results coming out of all laboratories that are doing molecular testing. I feel very privileged for the opportunity to provide input and guidance that helps people produce quality results in their laboratories.”
More information about Dr. Hill’s presentation can be found here.
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