RITM-MBL leads Training Workshop for COVID-19 QAP Regional Implementers
Kick-off meeting for the Online Training Workshop for COVID-19 QAP Regional Implementers last November 25, 2022 via Zoom

The Molecular Biology Laboratory of Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM-MBL) launched the Training Workshop for Regional Implementers of the COVID-19 Quality Assurance Program (QAP) for SARS-CoV-2 Detection by Real-Time PCR on November 25, 2022 as part of the efforts to improve the nationwide implementation of the program.

The training workshop is composed of a series of virtual interactive learning and development activities spanning one to three days each week for the next 13 weeks to progressively supplement the technical capacity of all Centers for Health Development – Regional Laboratory Network Unit (DOH-CHD-RLNUs); and seven weeks for the participating representatives from Health Facilities and Regulatory Bureau (DOH – HFSRB) and Center for Health Development – Regulatory, Licensing and Enforcement Division (CHD-RLED) of the Department of Health (DOH).

The training envisions to bridge current gaps in fully engaging RITM’s regional partners – the CHD-Regional Laboratory Network Unit Coordinators – in effectively implementing the COVID-19 Quality Assurance Program across the entire breadth of the laboratory network which currently involves over 340 COVID-19 Molecular Laboratories across the country.

RITM-MBL will lead the training implementation until its projected completion in April 2023.

“With this, RITM hopes to strengthen the regional technical oversight and increase responsiveness to individual laboratory concerns—both quality and technical-related, as they would have better capability to physically monitor the laboratories in each of their respective regions,” said RITM-MBL Laboratory Manager, Lei Lanna Dancel.

Following the launching, the Week 1 of the online lectures was conducted on November 28 and 29 with an initial 70 participants. The discussions revolved on facilitating QAP elements and implementing QAP intervention measures.

The participants will undergo workshops for monitoring and laboratory assessment, including lectures, walkthroughs, and observation of the processes which will provide them with ideas and a good grasp of how to harness the necessary competencies.

For each training, a pre-test will be given to gauge their baseline knowledge on the topics that will be covered by the lectures. Exercises and focus group discussions will also supplement the lecture series and post-tests will be periodically administered throughout the weekly workshop sessions.

Furthermore, they will participate as observers in actual laboratory assessment activities, alongside RITM-MBL Quality Assurance staff. Through actual guided participation in the conduct of Key Performance Indicators / Laboratory Quality Indicators (KPI/LQI) monitoring and laboratory assessment. The participants will be able to apply competencies learned from the initial part of the training, including troubleshooting and technical assistance provision to COVID-19 PCR laboratories

At the end of the training workshop, each participant is expected to carry out both KPI/LQI monitoring and laboratory assessment with continued guidance of RITM.

by Yvette Kirsten Gimena, Communication and Engagement Office