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Application of the OSAC Registry of Standards to Forensic Science Service Providers’ Quality Systems

Event Dates
Eastern
Event Duration
1 hour
Location
Online

Since its official inception in 2014, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Organization of Scientific Area Committees (OSAC) for Forensic Science has advanced the mission of strengthening forensic practice by facilitating the development of technically sound, science-based standards through a formal standard developing organization (SDO) process. This is accomplished by evaluating existing standards published by SDOs for placement onto the OSAC Registry and by promoting the use of the OSAC Registry-approved standards throughout the forensic science community.

With the list of OSAC-approved standards growing, the community has rightfully turned its attention to the implementation of these standards into the quality systems of forensic laboratories. As of the drafting of this abstract, OSAC has posted 77 standards on its Registry involving 18 different forensic science disciplines, plus interdisciplinary standards. OSAC executed its first annual national OSAC Registry Implementation Survey that closed in August 2021, which indicated more than 140 forensic science service providers have already implemented standards listed on the OSAC Registry into their quality management system documents.

In September 2020, OSAC began implementing Scientific and Technical Review Panels (STRPs) with the goal of performing a critical and knowledgeable review of draft standards and providing comments and recommendations to strengthen the document. These STRP reviews add further strength and depth to original drafts produced by OSAC, ensuring a stronger work product is provided to the SDO for their formal consensus process.

This presentation will address the practical challenges facing quality managers and senior management in the process of standards implementation. The presenters will discuss how directors create a framework for implementation, access the list of current and pending standards categorized by discipline, and assign responsibilities to technical leaders. In addition, the presenters will discuss how technical leaders can be enabled to conduct gap analyses effectively, understand partial and full implementation of standards, and incorporate the necessary language in the laboratory’s quality documents.

Detailed Learning Objectives

  1. Attendees will learn how quality managers and directors can address the practical challenges they face in the process of standards implementation.
  2. Attendees will understand how directors can create a framework for implementation of standards, access the list of current and pending standards categorized by discipline, and assign responsibilities to technical leaders.
  3. Attendees will gain insight into how technical leaders can be enabled to conduct gap analyses effectively, understand partial and full implementation of standards, and incorporate the necessary language in the laboratory’s quality documents.

Date Created: August 5, 2021