Implementation of a Blind Quality Control Program in Blood Alcohol Analysis

dc.contributor.author Moral, Jackeline
dc.contributor.author Hundel, Callan
dc.contributor.author Lee, Dayong
dc.contributor.author Neuman, Maddisen
dc.contributor.author Grimaldi, Aimee
dc.contributor.author Cuellar, Maria
dc.contributor.author Stout, Peter
dc.contributor.department Center for Statistics and Applications in Forensic Evidence
dc.date 2020-04-10T01:12:16.000
dc.date.accessioned 2020-06-30T01:58:15Z
dc.date.available 2020-06-30T01:58:15Z
dc.date.copyright Tue Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 2019
dc.date.issued 2019-08-17
dc.description.abstract <p>Declared proficiency tests are limited in their use for testing the performance of the entire system, because analysts are aware that they are being tested. A blind quality control (BQC) is intended to appear as a real case to the analyst to remove any intentional or subconscious bias. A BQC program allows a real-time assessment of the laboratory’s policies and procedures and monitors reliability of casework. In September 2015, the Houston Forensic Science Center (HFSC) began a BQC program in blood alcohol analysis. Between September 2015 and July 2018, HFSC submitted 317 blind cases: 89 negative samples and 228 positive samples at five target concentrations (0.08, 0.15, 0.16, 0.20 and 0.25 g/100 mL; theoretical targets). These blood samples were analyzed by a headspace gas chromatograph interfaced with dual-flame ionization detectors (HS-GC-FID). All negative samples produced `no ethanol detected’ results. The mean (range) of reported blood alcohol concentrations (BACs) for the aforementioned target concentrations was 0.075 (0.073–0.078), 0.144 (0.140–0.148), 0.157 (0.155–0.160), 0.195 (0.192–0.200) and 0.249 (0.242–0.258) g/100 mL, respectively. The average BAC percent differences from the target for the positive blind cases ranged from −0.4 to −6.3%, within our uncertainty of measurement (8.95–9.18%). The rate of alcohol evaporation/degradation was determined negligible. A multiple linear regression analysis was performed to compare the % difference in BAC among five target concentrations, eight analysts, three HS-GC-FID instruments and two pipettes. The variables other than target concentrations showed no significant difference (<em>P</em> > 0.2). While the 0.08 g/100 mL target showed a significantly larger % difference than higher target concentrations (0.15–0.25 g/100 mL), the % differences among the higher targets were not concentration-dependent. Despite difficulties like gaining buy-in from stakeholders and mimicking evidence samples, the implementation of a BQC program has improved processes, shown methods are reliable and added confidence to staff’s testimony in court.</p>
dc.description.comments <p>This is a manuscript of an article published as Moral, Jackeline, Callan Hundl, Dayong Lee, Maddisen Neuman, Aimee Grimaldi, Maria Cuellar, and Peter Stout. "Implementation of a blind quality control program in blood alcohol analysis." <em>Journal of analytical toxicology</em> 43, no. 8 (2019): 630-636. Posted with permission of CSAFE.</p>
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.identifier archive/lib.dr.iastate.edu/csafe_pubs/30/
dc.identifier.articleid 1029
dc.identifier.contextkey 17326718
dc.identifier.s3bucket isulib-bepress-aws-west
dc.identifier.submissionpath csafe_pubs/30
dc.identifier.uri https://dr.lib.iastate.edu/handle/20.500.12876/20378
dc.language.iso en
dc.source.bitstream archive/lib.dr.iastate.edu/csafe_pubs/30/Moral__2019__Journal_of_Analytical_Toxicology__Manuscript.pdf|||Fri Jan 14 23:27:54 UTC 2022
dc.source.uri 10.1093/jat/bkz059
dc.subject.disciplines Forensic Science and Technology
dc.title Implementation of a Blind Quality Control Program in Blood Alcohol Analysis
dc.type article
dc.type.genre article
dspace.entity.type Publication
relation.isOrgUnitOfPublication d8a3c72b-850f-40f6-87c4-8812547080c7
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