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Canadian Association for Laboratory Accreditation Inc.

Building Laboratory Excellence

International Activities

CALA Participation in APLAC/NACLA/IAAC
Regional Bodies Providing Mechanism for Equivalence

CALA participates in:

This National status carries full international recognition and includes recognition from the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC).

These bodies have developed mechanisms to demonstrate accreditation equivalence. Under these mechanisms (called "arrangements"), accredited laboratories are considered as competent to provide results to parties from the nations of other signatories. For example, a Canadian environmental lab could be considered competent to provide results in Australia, or New Zealand, or Hong Kong, under APLAC (Note that the EPA program (NELAC) is not yet a signatory to any of these arrangements).

The Benefit of Equivalence

This type of international effort has immediate payback to some CALA members, and it prevents them having to acquire multiple accreditation in order to do work across international boundaries.

CALA is Evaluated

CALA is subject to examination by a regional body every four years. CALA's programs were evaluated by APLAC in 2000, and 2004, and in July 2005. The summary report of the most recent APLAC evaluation is contained in for members to review.

Overall, the APLAC evaluators were impressed with the competence demonstrated by CALA members.

Process For Global Recognition of the CALA Accreditation Program

Milestone Status Documentation (.pdf)
1 - Grant Accreditations Complete - January 4, 2005 Message from President of CALA
2 - Full Membership Status Complete - March 16, 2005 Full Membership Notice
3 - Invitation to Sign APLAC MRA Complete - November 17, 2005 APLAC Signatory Announcement
APLAC Approval 2005
4 - Application for and achieving ILAC Recognition Complete - November 17, 2005 ILAC Signatory Annoucement

CALA Evaluators

CALA also provides three "international peer body evaluators" (like "assessor" but for accreditation bodies) for all three of the regional bodies. In fact one of our evaluators is also a Lead Evaluator within two of these regions. In this way, CALA contributes materially to the success of these regions in their efforts to recognise the competence of CALA member laboratories. We have participated in two "evaluations" so far (at no cost to CALA members) and we expect to participate in (or lead) two more within the next two years.


Colleen Cotter
Manager, Accreditation
Canadian Association for Laboratory Accreditation
Suite 310, 1565 Carling Avenue
Ottawa, Ontario K1Z 8R1

telephone: (613) 233-5300
facsimile: (613) 233-5501

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