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The association between ACB Focus and the chemistry division of UK NEQAS is once again a major feature of Focus 2004.

The collaboration began in 2000 when UK NEQAS participated as a sister society in Pathology 2000, and continued two years later, when EQAS2002 was a satellite meeting to Focus 2002.

This year, Focus 2004 and the UK NEQAS meeting run side by side, with UK NEQAS symposia being an integral part of the scientific programme. New for 2004 is the inclusion of a wider range of UK NEQAS services in clinical chemistry, extending beyond the field of endocrinology associated with previous EQAS meetings.
Each day of Focus 2004 includes one joint ACB/UK NEQAS symposium and one pure UK NEQAS symposium. Topics for these have been chosen so as to produce an exciting, integrated programme, which reflects both what is current in the science of clinical biochemistry and in the science associated with good EQA design and practice.

The joint ACB/UK NEQAS symposia are 'Tumour Markers' on Tuesday, 'Monitoring of Diabetes' on Wednesday and 'Cases for Comment' on Thursday. The pure UK NEQAS symposia are 'Traceability of Hormone Assays' on Tuesday, 'Drug Assays: Fit for Purpose?' on Wednesday and ‘Phenotyping vs Genotyping: Applications and Quality Assurance’ on Thursday.

Complementing the UK NEQAS Symposia are a number of Workshops and breakout sessions organised by UK NEQAS member schemes. The UK NEQAS organisation also has a stand at Focus to serve as a meeting point for delegates who wish to discuss their needs or comment on UK NEQAS services.

Further information on UK NEQAS activities at Focus 2004 may be found at www.ukneqas.org.uk

It is a pleasure once again to be associated with this major collaboration between the ACB and the UK NEQAS organisation, which is of such mutual benefit. Enjoy the meeting!

Jonathan Middle
Chairman EQAS Meetings Organising Committee, UK NEQAS Executive Committee representative for Clinical Chemistry