In recent years, there has been renewed interest in the “old” average of normals concept, now generally referred to as moving average quality control (MA QC) or patient-based real-time quality control (PBRTQC). However, there are some controversies regarding PBRTQC which this review aims to address while also indicating the current status of PBRTQC.
This review gives the background of certain newly described optimization and validation methods. It also indicates how QC plans incorporating PBRTQC can be designed for greater effectiveness and/or (cost) efficiency. Furthermore, it discusses controversies regarding the complexity of obtaining PBRTQC settings, the replacement of iQC, and software functionality requirements. Finally, it presents evidence of the added value and practicability of PBRTQC.
Recent developments in, and availability of, simulation methods to optimize and validate laboratory-specific PBRTQC procedures have enabled medical laboratories to implement PBRTQC in their daily practice. Furthermore, these methods have made it possible to demonstrate the practicability and added value of PBRTQC by means of two prospective “clinical” studies and other investigations. Although internal QC will remain an essential part of any QC plan, applying PBRTQC can now significantly improve its performance and (cost) efficiency.
Research funding: None to declare
Author contributions: All authors have accepted responsibility for the entire content of this manuscript and approved its submission.
Competing interests: H.H. van Rossum is owner and director of www.huvaros.com that markets MA Generator.
Informed consent: Not applicable.
Ethical approval: Not applicable.
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