Hong Kong Institute of Medical Laboratory Sciences Ltd.


HKIMLSQAP (founded 1990)

The health service in Hong Kong has long leaned upon overseas systems and has none of its own which has been criticized in the Editorial of the prominent Medical Journal "The Lancet" volume 322, the February issue of 1990.

Foreseeing this imperfection, a consortium of enthusiastic and energetic practicing medical laboratory professionals assembled in the late 1988. They studied the feasibility of establishing a local Quality Assurance Programme to promote the quality and standard of medical laboratory techniques, examine the comparability of analytical methodologies and help rectify technical problems among medical laboratories in Hong Kong. Upon completion of the research for nearly two years, Hong Kong Institute of Medical Laboratory Sciences Quality Assurance Programme Ltd. (HKIMLSQAP), formerly Hong Kong Medical Technology Association Quality Assurance Programme, was launched as the first ever run indigenous programme in Hong Kong in February 1990.


HKIMLSQAP is manned and administered by a council of office-bearers including the chairman, secretaries, treasurer, quality manager, panel heads and deputy panel heads of eight specialties currently offered. Each specialty panel is made up of experienced professionals in the field. All appointments are under a non-remunerated and voluntary basis. A staff is employed to assist the operation in the rented office at Flat 1711, Floor 17, Block C, Bell House, 525-543 Nathan Road, Kowloon.

Currently, there are eight specialties: Anatomical Pathology, Haematology and Serology, Medical Microbiology, Clinical Chemistry jointly organized with Randox RIQAS, Acid-Fast Bacillus Smear Examination, Neisseria gonorrhoeae Susceptibility Testing, Virus Serology and Viral Nucleic Acid Testing in collaboration with Public Health Laboratory Services Branch of Department of Health. In co-operation with Hong Kong College of Pathologists, HKIMLSQAP offers Interpretative Quality Assurance Programme in Clinical Microbiology and Haematology in 1996 and 2006, respectively. There are more than 80 medical laboratories from Hong Kong, Macau and vicinity participating to over 230 subjects among 10 programmes.

Panel members are recruited from eminent medical laboratory technologists, scientists and pathologists practicing in public and private sectors. The Panel Heads are given high degree of freedom and autonomy to run the specialties. They are responsible for the administration, development, data processing, statistical analysis and generation of the survey reports. Distinguished professionals are also invited to give comments and advice to specialty panels for improvement.


HKIMLSQAP is non-profit making and was monetarily supported by Hong Kong Institute of Medical Laboratory Sciences Ltd., formerly Hong Kong Medical Technology Association (founded 1966). At present, HKIMLSQAP is basically self-financed by annual subscriptions at nominal amount levied from participating laboratories.


Each participant is assigned with a laboratory code. This code is the only identity for communication between the participant and HKIMLSQAP. The key to decipher the identities of participants is limited to few authorized members of HKIMLSQAP Council. HKIMLSQAP Council Members are forbidden to release any data to any outsiders. All information on participant performance shall not be disclosed to any third party unless prior agreement with the concerned participants has been obtained or applicable laws or regulations stipulate such disclosure.

World Health Organisation (WHO) Participation

HKIMLSQAP has participated in the International External Quality Assurance Scheme (IEQAS) of WHO. As participation is on the national basis, we have the honour and privilege to represent Hong Kong in this Scheme. At present we have joined the IEQAS in the specialties of clinical chemistry, coagulation, haematology and malarial parasite examination.


HKIMLSQAP have successfully pursued the Hong Kong Laboratory Accreditation Scheme (HOKLAS) accreditation of the specialty of virus serology, as an accredited proficiency testing provider, on the advice of the Accreditation Advisory Board of Hong Kong Accreditation Service (HKAS) on 26th October, 2010.  HKAS has accredited the specialty of Virus Serology of HKIMLSQAP under HOKLAS for specific proficiency testing providers. The results shown in the reports were determined by the specialty of Virus Serology of HKIMLSQAP in accordance with its terms of accreditation.

Furthermore, HKIMLSQAP has successfully extended the accreditation status of HKAS to the quality assurance programme in Neisseria gonorrhoeae susceptibility testing on 8th November, 2012.


Last update on 27 July 2012