By Airman 1st Class David D. McLoney, 6th Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs
/ Published February 21, 2020
Senior Airman Sydney Daugherty, a laboratory technician at the 6th Medical Group, streaks an agar plate, Feb. 18, 2020, at MacDill Air Force Base, Fla. These samples are allowed time to grow and then tested for different bacteria. If bacteria are found, tests are run to determine what antibiotics work on different types of bacteria. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class David D. McLoney)
Staff Sgt. Edward Thompson, NCO in charge of Hematology and Urinalysis at the 6th Medical Group, looks at a sample through a microscope, Feb. 18, 2020, at MacDill Air Force Base, Fla. Using the microscope, Thompson looks at red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets checking for abnormalities, which allows him to determine if a patient has a disease such as Malaria or Lukemia. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class David D. McLoney)
The 6th Medical Group laboratory recently achieved their civilian accreditation by passing a no-notice inspection by the College of American Pathologists.
Master Sgt. Kelly Adler, the 6th MDG laboratory flight chief explained, by passing this inspection and receiving the civilian accreditation, the group demonstrated the ability to turn out accurate, reliable results comparable to its civilian peers and even surpassed the standards of the CAP.
The CAP inspection includes a checklist of 4,000 items and a no-notice, on-site review of the medical processes to verify how the medical clinic is performing.
The inspection varies from base to base, and includes individual requirements for testing, training requirements before reporting patient results, laboratory safety, control tests and critical value procedures.
Failing the inspection can result in the laboratory being shut down due to not being licensed, which would affect the entire community in a negative way.
“This is not an inspection that we can prepare for,” said Staff Sgt. Edward Thompson Jr., the 6th MDG NCO in charge of hematology and urinalysis. “Passing such strict accreditation standards reaffirms our overall teamwork and attention to detail.”
Along with the civilian accreditation being an important factor to proving the laboratory’s reliability, it also shows how much teamwork is required to provide support for the mission.
“The College of American Pathologists is the world’s largest association composed of certified pathologists leading in laboratory quality assurance,” said Thompson. “Being 100% compliant requires everyone to do their part every day to provide outstanding care to our patient population at MacDill.”
Whether it be on or off base, the MacDill clinic strives to provide the best care to all of its patrons. Passing the CAP inspection and receiving the civilian accreditation is another accomplishment showing the 6th MDG’s continuous commitment to support the mission and the surrounding community.