National Laboratory for HIV Reference Services
The National Laboratory for HIV Reference Services (NLHRS) provides highly specialized diagnostic and consultative services to provincial, national and international partners for HIV and HTLV testing. This capacity allows the STBBI Division to rapidly respond to outbreaks and changes in the HIV epidemic as a complement to traditional epi-surveillance practices.
The NLHRS was the first lab in Canada to be accredited to the ISO 15189 standard (Medical Laboratories - Particular Requirements for Quality and Competence) and its expertise in this area is sought by national and international quality organizations.
The NLHRS was also the first lab in Canada to be accredited to the ISO 17043 standard (Conformity assessment – General requirements for proficiency testing). The lab provides quality assurance programs for HIV and HTLV serology and HIV viral load testing as well as external quality control monitoring for both HIV serology and HIV viral load. In its role as a national public health laboratory and in its collaboration with other HIV clinical labs through the Canadian Association of HIV Clinical Laboratory Specialists, the NLHRS strives to develop improved diagnostic and prognostic testing methodologies through research.
The laboratory is committed to leadership in providing reliable expertise and assistance and an advocacy role to all external and internal stakeholders.