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Table 1 Most common problems reported or observed during on-site evaluation visits of the eight selected health institution medical laboratories from December 2011 to December 2012

From: External quality assessment for acid fast bacilli smear microscopy in eastern part of Ethiopia

Problems found Laboratories N (%)
Laboratory safety
 No separate area for TB work 8 (100)
 No adequate ventilation 5 (62.5)
 No biohazard waste bin with a lid 4 (50)
 Improper use of PPE 7 (87.5)
 Inappropriate cleaning procedure 7 (87.5)
Laboratory reagents
 Expired reagents or no label 3 (37.5)
 Not filtered before use 7 (87.5)
 Filtered once a month 4 (50)
Laboratory supplies
 No staining rack 5 (62.5)
 No wire loop 6 (75)
 No funnel 4 (50)
 No analytical balance 8 (100)
Microscope
 Not sufficient 4 (50)
 Inadequate light source 6 (75)
 Objective not cleaned after positive slide 7 (87.5)
 No routine care/daily maintenance 7 (87.5)
Smearing and staining procedures
 Background staining not acceptable 3 (37.5)
 Background material doesn’t represent sputum 4 (50)
 Inappropriate smear thickness 5 (62.5)
 Inappropriate smear size 4 (50)
 Report with grading 6 (75)
 Include control smears
  Daily 2 (25)
  New batch of reagents 5 (62.5)
  Never 2 (25)
Time taken to examine 100 fields
 5 min 4 (50)
 10 min 3 (37.5)
 15 min 1 (12.5)
Administrative
 High workload 4 (50)
 Incomplete laboratory request form 7 (87.5)
 No NTP approved report forms 3 (37.5)
EQA
 Participated 7 (87.5)
 Rechecking result received 3 (37.5)