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UKAS fridge calibration: Three reasons why you may need it

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Alex Henderson

Aston Business School graduate who has been the Managing Director of Henderson Biomedical since January 2015. Passionate about helping laboratories keep their vital equipment operational and compliant. Architecture enthusiast, fitness fanatic and dog lover!

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UKAS fridge calibration: Why is it needed? It is important to know that fridge temperature calibration comes in two forms. The first is a standard traceable calibration, usually performed once a year. Here, an engineer will carry out a temperature calibration on your laboratory refrigerator, using an independently calibrated thermometer.

The other is a UKAS calibration. In this instance the engineer will still perform a temperature calibration using a specially calibrated thermometer. However, the process will be carried out in accordance with ISO 17025, by a company who is accredited to the same standard. This ensures the calibration results are more meaningful and arguably more accurate. 

But how do you choose between a standard, traceable fridge calibration and a UKAS fridge calibration? Which one should you choose? In this month’s blog, I will take a look at three reasons why you may be required to calibrate your fridge to UKAS standards.

What is a UKAS fridge calibration?

Before we start looking at why you may need a UKAS calibration for your refrigerator, it is important to first understand what it is. Essentially, it means the calibration has been carried out under the guidelines of ISO 17025 and the engineer/company who has performed the calibration has been independently audited by UKAS. More information on what a UKAS calibration is can be found in a previous blog I wrote back in April 2018.

Reasons why you may need a UKAS fridge calibration

A governing body may demand a UKAS fridge calibration

If your laboratory is governed by a specific body such as the Human Tissue Authority (HTA) or the Medicines & Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), you may be expected to have your fridges UKAS calibrated every year.

Alternatively, your laboratory may be accredited by a quality standard such as ISO 15189. In this case, your external ISO 15189 auditor may demand that your refrigerators are calibrated to UKAS standards.

Failure to do this may result in your laboratory losing their accreditation or connection with the relevant governing body.

The customer demands a UKAS fridge calibration

If your laboratory is manufacturing a product which is to be sold on the open market, such as medication, then your customer may dictate guidelines regarding the storing conditions. Part of this may include that the devices which are being used to keep the product cool are temperature calibrated to UKAS. It may be that the end user wants to be sure that the storage temperature of the product has remained consistent throughout the supply chain.

Non-UKAS fridge calibration may have implications on safety

Depending on what you are storing in your laboratory fridge, there may be a safety risk to people’s health if the product is not stored at the correct temperature. An example of this could be a vaccine which needs to remain below a certain temperature before being administered to the patient. In this instance, where the temperature is so critical, a UKAS calibration may be required for the fridges that are storing this particular vaccine.

How Henderson Biomedical can help

Henderson Biomedical is a UK provider of UKAS fridge calibration and we are based in the London area. Our Field Service engineers are located throughout the UK and can perform on-site UKAS fridge calibration at a time convenient to you.

For more information, please contact us using our online form or call our team on 020 8663 4610.

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