Gen QA


MENU menu

Close close menu

Membership & Participation

How do I apply for GenQA membership?

Information regarding membership of GenQA can be found at register with GenQA please complete the GenQA Registration form.  Once your account has been approved, your laboratory/centre will be given a unique GenQA Identifier (G*****) that should be quoted in all correspondence with GenQA. All registered laboratory/centre staff will receive user names and passwords by separate email.  New laboratories/centres will also receive a GenQA Welcome pack.

Who can participate in GenQA EQAs?

GenQA services are designed for public and private sector clinical laboratories/centres serving clinicians or patients. We welcome:

  • Clinical and other laboratories,
  • Laboratories with purely research or industrial roles,
  • Manufacturers* of diagnostic instruments and reagents (*Manufacturers participate on a 'technical and analytical/genotyping' only basis, i.e. receiving samples and returning results with no clinical interpretation provided.)

GenQA operates in accordance with the RCPath Joint Working Group (JWG) Conditions of Participation by UK Clinical Laboratories in External Quality Assessment Schemes.  All participants must agree to abide by the GenQA Terms and Conditions.


How do I purchase/enrol in an EQA?

EQA enrolment is open from September each year, however, enrolment periods for different EQAs may vary, please check the website (  Enrolment for an EQA may close early if the maximum number of participants is reached.   GenQA members will be informed by email once enrolment is open.  Laboratories/centres must be members of GenQA to enrol in EQAs, and only the Primary Contact can enrol in EQAs. For more details on how to enrol please see GenQA Administration User Guide.

What are participants expected to do?

Enrolled participants will receive details by email when an EQA is open for analysis and/or samples have been dispatched.  Participants are expected to access the instructions and information for the cases/samples online and to analyse them according to their standard protocols.  Participants must submit their anonymised results by the deadline using their usual laboratory report or a proforma provided by GenQA.


The results are independently assessed for the accuracy of the analytical/genotyping results, clinical interpretation of the results (if appropriate) and clerical accuracy (including report layout and content).  Every participant will receive an Individual Laboratory/Centre Report (ILR/ICR) with educational advice and the EQA Summary report which contains information regarding general findings, a summary of methodologies used, common errors,number of participants and benchmarking.


Participants have continual access to a live Performance Certificate summarising their performance status for all EQAs in which they are enrolled.  It is the responsibility of all participants to ensure their contact details (address and email) are kept up to date so they can be contacted by GenQA.

What format are the EQAs you offer?

Most EQAs require analysis/genotyping and interpretation.  However GenQA also offers technical EQAs, genotyping only and interpretation only EQAs.  The EQAs may include:

  • Sample based e.g fixed cell suspensions, cells, DNA, formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tissue, fresh tissue, plasma, blood spot cards, whole blood samples, saliva.
  • Online image analysis
  • Case scenario for interpretation only
  • Sequential online case scenario e.g. Clinical Genetics
Can I still participate if our laboratory only offers one test/gene/target for a particular EQA?

Each year GenQA publishes a list of specific genes or disorders that may be offered for each EQA in the following EQA year i.e. the scope of the EQA.  We may include some or all of these disorders/genes/tests. If your laboratory enrols in an EQA but is unable to participate in a case(s) then please submit a report indicating that your laboratory does not offer this test and you will not be penalised.

What are pilot EQAs?

Pilot and Exploratory EQAs are marked and scored, but no performance designation is applied. For more information go to  There is no appeals process for pilot EQAs.  GenQA may request specific feedback on new Pilot EQAs.  Details of current pilot EQAs can be found at

What are GenQA’s Terms and conditions?

GenQA members must comply with  the GenQA Terms and Conditions.  The GenQA Terms and Conditions are available in the footer of and on the GenQA Members area website.

Is my laboratory/centre information confidential?

Yes. GenQA takes your privacy seriously; the GenQA Privacy Policy is drafted in accordance with the requirements of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR).  GenQA staff and other members of your own laboratory/centre registered with GenQA are the only individuals with access to your account information. Each laboratory/centre is assigned a unique GenQA Participant Identifier (Gxxxxx) when you register for an account which is used for assessment purposes.  However, if your laboratory is classified as a persistent poor performer, GenQA is obliged to share information with the following bodies:

  • UK National Quality Assurance Advisory Panel (NQAAP) for Genetics, for UK laboratories.
  • NHS England Genomics Unit for NHS England commissioned Genomic Medicine Service laboratories within England.
  • UK Health Security Agency and Office for Health Improvement and Disparities for NHS laboratories performing newborn screening.
  • Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) for Swiss laboratories

For further information on performance monitoring and being classified as a persistent poor performer, please consult the performance criteria for each EQA specialty which can be accessed from our website at


Can I use our routine testing methods for the EQA samples?

GenQA anticipates that all EQA samples will be tested in the same manner as other samples that would be received by your laboratory. This allows participants to use a range of testing from whole genome sequencing to single gene sequencing and targeted testing.  For a limited number of EQAs, we offer testing options and samples will be distributed according to the testing method indicated by your laboratory upon enrolling for the EQA.