ISO/IEC 17025 Resource Center
Laboratory accreditation

ISO/IEC 17025 Accreditation Resources

Accreditation is defined as a procedure by which an authoritative body gives formal recognition that a laboratory is competent to perform specific tasks. Lab accreditation recognizes a lab's technical capability and is usually specific for tests of the systems, products, components, or materials for which the lab claims proficiency. Accreditation allows a lab to determine whether it is performing its work correctly and according to appropriate standards. This does not guarantee that a given analytical result is correct, but it does establish standards that must by met and a framework approach to detect nonconformities when they occur. Good labs will have defensible results, but accreditation means that the results are defensible to a recognized standard that does not change when lab personnel or circumstances change.

The aims of ISO 17025 are to:
1. Provide a basis for use by accreditation bodies in assessing the competence of laboratories.
2. Establish general requirements for demonstrating lab compliance to perform specific tests or calibrations.
3. Assist in the development and implementation of a lab's quality system.

Accreditation Bodies and Cooperations

The International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC) has an excellent range of publications that can be obtained from their website.

Canadian Association for Laboratory Accreditation

Standards Council of Canada




American Association for Laboratory Accreditation

Laboratory Accreditation Bureau






Regional cooperations have been established to manage the work needed for mutual recognition of accreditation bodies. The regional cooperations all work under the ILAC umbrella. They include:

- European Accreditation Cooperation (EA)

- Asia Pacific Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (APLAC)

- Southern Africa Accreditation Cooperation (SADCA)

- Inter-American Accreditation Cooperation (IAAC)

The National Cooperation for Laboratory Accreditation (NACLA) was established specifically for the United States to assist in mutual recognitions amongst the numerous accreditation bodies within that country.

Detailed accreditation information can be found at and


What is the process for a laboratory to get accredited?

The following link shows the steps to accrediation:


What is ISO/IEC 17025?

A detailed answer can be found at the following sites:

The "ISO17025" Standard for Calibration Labs


You will also need a copy of the ISO/IEC 17025 standard. Go to the following website:


How do other laboratories get accredited?

You definitely need a Quality Manual and that can be obtained from the following site:

SHOQ Quality Assurance Manuals Inc.


A nice text book reference is the "Laboratory Quality Handbook of Best Practices and Relevant Regulations". The book can be obtained as follows:



Interested in medical laboratory accreditation?

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