Veolia Water Technologies

Water quality for a laboratory monitored by AQUAVISTA™

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Courtesy of Veolia Water Technologies

Biochemical & Molecular Biology laboratory at Nîmes University Hospital

The Biochemical & Molecular Biology laboratory at Nîmes University Hospital has four main activities: the Biochemistry, Hormonology, Biological Oncology and General Toxico-Pharmacology sectors, for both routine and emergencies; the Toxicology and specialized and forensic Pharmacology sector; the Molecular Genetics sector (somatic oncogenetics, neurogenetics, constitutional pharmacogenetics) and finally a delocalized Biology sector.
The laboratory team is composed of 41 staff, of which 26 technicians who are mainly in charge of the maintenance of the analysers and the technical validation of the examinations and also nine medical biologists who ensure, among other things, the medical expertise of the laboratory examinations through the provision of advice to clinicians and a university teaching activity.
The laboratory operates 7 days a week and 24 hours a day and on average the laboratory processes 1200 samples/day and produces 2.4 million procedures/year.

The Biochemical & Molecular Biology laboratory at Nîmes University Hospital has been using Roche Diagnostics and Veolia solutions since 2013. This solution is differentiated by a complete analytical offer that allows laboratory technicians and medical biologists to have real-time access to water quality monitoring and to intervene within the scope of preventive and curative maintenance actions.

Traceability at the heart of the laboratory
The current era of medical biology laboratories is the consolidation of analytical solutions (grouping of several analysers into a single one) for medico-economic aspects to ensure greater traceability in sample processing procedures, while optimising the analysers’ performance and production.
“Previously, each analyser had a dedicated water supply, today a single water production plant must be able to produce a sufficient volume of water while ensuring an irreproachable water quality, as this is an essential part of the analytical process at the origin of the production of patient examination results”, explains Dr David-Paul De Brauwere, hospital practitioner at the Biochemical & Molecular Biology laboratory. These automated technical platforms are at the heart of the laboratory’s organisation; they make it possible to manage high flows while meeting the quality and traceability standards required by regulations.
Roche Diagnostics France supports laboratories in this evolution by offering highperformance, proven analytical solutions for automated technical platforms.

Clinical analysers need a constant, safe and compliant supply of water to produce and reproduce reliable diagnostic tests. Roche and Veolia’s offer meets this requirement for quality and traceability. It includes both the Roche product lines (cobas®8000), Medica Pro for water supply and the user interface with the AQUAVISTATM portal for real-time water quality monitoring. 

An interface that facilitates the accreditation process
By 2020, 100% of the NABM examinations produced by a laboratory must be certified.
The COFRAC (COmité FRançais d’ACcréditation - French Certification Authority) is in charge of issuing these certificates to medical biology laboratories who must meet the specific requirements concerning competence and quality required by standard NF EN ISO 15 189.

With a view to full accreditation in 2 years: “access to an interface that centralises water quality histories and allows us to view all these main parameters on a single page - temperature, conductivity, resistivity - provide a guarantee of traceability; as well as access to the calendar of events, allowing us to view the history of alarms. We become more efficient! We can immediately provide all the information requested during the COFRAC audits”, says Dr De Brauwere.

Anticipating risks: preventive maintenance

Every day, the technicians check the water quality from the AQUAVISTA™ Portal. Thanks to the graphs, they can see if the water quality is deteriorating, and if necessary, act preventively by changing the Medica Pro filtration cartridges.
“For example, regarding resistivity, we evaluated at 18 hours the interval between the beginning of its deterioration and its impact on water quality and therefore on the results of patient examinations. Water quality is at the heart of the laboratory’s activity in order to ensure a constant quality service in the production of test results while guaranteeing the performance of our production: over 1,000 samples are processed every day; 24/7 reproducibility of analytical processes is essential for rigorous monitoring of patients’ biological parameters.
When an alarm sounds, or when one of the water quality monitoring parameters shows a deterioration of the water quality, the technicians intervene immediately as part of a preventive maintenance action.

“This type of early warning has enabled us to reduce the number of alarms since the solution has been deployed in our department”, concludes Dr De Brauwere.

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