General guidelines for PT sample handling include:
- Verify acceptable shipping temperature upon receipt.
- Inspect samples for damage, breakage, or leaking.
- Verify the correct number of samples are received.
- Verify the correct samples as per institution-specific order are received.
- Ensure that all discrepancies or problems are handled as per institution specific policy and procedure and reported to the PT provider immediately, as reshipping deadlines apply for all samples.
- Document all steps of the proficiency testing process on a checklist for retention with all PT event documentation. This checklist may be provided by the PT provider, accreditation agency, or be institution specific.
Handle and store all samples according to PT provider instructions, facility policy and procedure, and OSHA requirements for bloodborne pathogens (BBP) and waste disposal, including but not limited to, proper safety precautions and wearing appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE).