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SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED UNIT STANDARD: 

Handle samples in a centralised sample reception area 
SAQA US ID UNIT STANDARD TITLE
257196  Handle samples in a centralised sample reception area 
ORIGINATOR
SGB Medical Laboratory Assistants 
PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QUALITY ASSURANCE FUNCTIONARY
-  
FIELD SUBFIELD
Field 09 - Health Sciences and Social Services Curative Health 
ABET BAND UNIT STANDARD TYPE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL CREDITS
Undefined  Regular  Level 3  NQF Level 03  20 
REGISTRATION STATUS REGISTRATION START DATE REGISTRATION END DATE SAQA DECISION NUMBER
Reregistered  2018-07-01  2023-06-30  SAQA 06120/18 
LAST DATE FOR ENROLMENT LAST DATE FOR ACHIEVEMENT
2024-06-30   2027-06-30  

In all of the tables in this document, both the pre-2009 NQF Level and the NQF Level is shown. In the text (purpose statements, qualification rules, etc), any references to NQF Levels are to the pre-2009 levels unless specifically stated otherwise.  

This unit standard does not replace any other unit standard and is not replaced by any other unit standard. 

PURPOSE OF THE UNIT STANDARD 
This unit standard will enable the learner to handle samples for laboratory analysis, and will provide skills for recognition within a laboratory for upward mobility as well as skills to work in other departments in pathology laboratories. Knowledge and insight gained are essential elements for the quality needed in handling pathology specimens as well as addressing the skills shortage in the country.

On completion of this unit standard, the competent learner will be able to:
  • Receive and verify suitability of samples in a sample reception area.
  • Prepare samples for despatch.
  • Store, retrieve and discard samples.
  • Complete required laboratory records. 

  • LEARNING ASSUMED TO BE IN PLACE AND RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING 
  • Communication at NQF Level 2.
  • Mathematical literacy at NQF Level 2.

    Recognition of Prior Learning:

    Relevant prior work experience, qualifications and learning events will be recognised for this qualification, and competence will be measured against the equivalent assessment criteria. RPL will be granted in agreement with the relevant ETQA or ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding in place with the relevant ETQA. 

  • UNIT STANDARD RANGE 
    Handle implies:
  • Receive, verify, prepare, store, retrieve and discard.

    Samples include but are not limited to:
  • Sputum, blood, cerebrospinal fluid, pus, swabs, urine, stools, semen and other human body fluids and tissues, as well as food and water samples. 

  • Specific Outcomes and Assessment Criteria: 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 1 
    Receive and verify suitability of samples in a sample reception area. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Infection control and workplace safety protocols relating to the safe handling of samples are followed meticulously to ensure environmental, personnel and sample safety. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    On receipt, data on samples and request forms are verified and sorted according to level of priority and condition of samples; patient demographics, sample details and test requests are recorded, either manually or electronically. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Verification of data includes patient details, tests requested, date and time of specimen collection and receipt.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Sample is assessed for condition and any discrepancies are recorded and reported. 
    ASSESSMENT CRITERION RANGE 
    Broken/empty/leaking containers; sample sufficiency for tests requested; sample suitability for compliance with test/s requested, e.g. haemolysed samples are unsuitable for potassium analysis.
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 4 
    Suitable samples with accompanying request forms are match-labelled for continuous tracking and ultimate result reporting. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 2 
    Prepare samples for dispatch. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Samples are separated by centrifugation into high and low-density components according to specified test requirements, and/or aliquoted for multi-purpose testing. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Equipment is operated and maintained as per manufacturers' requirements for maintaining optimal performance. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Samples and accompanying documents are distributed internally and externally according to required legislation and relevant protocols. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 3 
    Store, retrieve and discard samples. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    Reserve primary samples are appropriately stored/filed for easy future retrieval and are timeously retrieved when requested, to avoid compromising the state of the sample/s. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    When sample testing is completed and test results declared satisfactory, samples are discarded according to the required methods to reduce environmental hazards and to maintain order in the laboratory. 

    SPECIFIC OUTCOME 4 
    Complete required laboratory records. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERIA
     

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 1 
    The capturing of patient details is meticulously completed so that full details of the tests and results will be reported to the referring medical officer. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 2 
    Missing, illegible or ambiguous data is identified and referred to the relevant source for cross-referencing. 

    ASSESSMENT CRITERION 3 
    Verified results are communicated to the authorised health care practitioner and request forms are filed for easy, future retrieval. 


    UNIT STANDARD ACCREDITATION AND MODERATION OPTIONS 
  • Anyone assessing a learner or moderating the assessment of a learner against this qualification must be registered as an assessor and/or moderator with the relevant Education and Training Quality Assurance body (ETQA) or ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding in place with the relevant ETQA.
  • Any institution offering learning for this unit standard must be accredited as a provider with the relevant ETQA or ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding in place with the relevant ETQA.
  • Assessment and moderation of assessment will be overseen by the relevant ETQA according to the ETQA`s policies and guidelines for assessment and moderation.
  • Anyone wishing to be assessed against this qualification may apply to be assessed by any relevant accredited assessment agency, assessor or provider institution, which is also accredited by the relevant ETQA or ETQA that has a Memorandum of Understanding in place with the relevant ETQA. 

  • UNIT STANDARD ESSENTIAL EMBEDDED KNOWLEDGE 
  • Laboratory Safety Procedures.
  • Use and maintenance of laboratory apparatus.
  • Policies and Procedures of the relevant organisation.

    Current legislation pertaining to:
  • Occupational Health and Safety.
  • Handling or use of Human Tissue.
  • Medical, Dental and Supplementary Health Services.
  • Regulations defining the scope of the profession of Medical Technology.
  • Statutory guidelines of the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) pertaining to Medical Ethics. 

  • UNIT STANDARD DEVELOPMENTAL OUTCOME 
    N/A 

    UNIT STANDARD LINKAGES 
    N/A 


    Critical Cross-field Outcomes (CCFO): 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO IDENTIFYING 
    Identifying and solving problems in which responses display that reasonable decisions using critical thinking have been made.

    Refer to the following Specific Outcomes:
  • Receive and verify suitability of samples in a sample reception area.
  • Prepare samples for dispatch. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO WORKING 
    Working effectively with others as a member of a team, group, organization or community.

    Refer to the following Specific Outcomes:
  • Store, retrieve and discard samples.
  • Complete required laboratory records. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO ORGANISING 
    Organising and managing oneself and one's activities responsibly and effectively.

    Refer to all Specific Outcomes. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO COLLECTING 
    Collecting, analysing, organizing and critically evaluating information:

    Refer to the following Specific Outcomes:
  • Receive and verify suitability of samples in a sample reception area.
  • Complete required laboratory records. 

  • UNIT STANDARD CCFO COMMUNICATING 
    Communicating effectively using visual, mathematical and/or language skills in the mode of oral and or written persuasion.

    Refer to all Specific Outcomes. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO SCIENCE 
    Using science and technology effectively and critically showing responsibility towards the environment and health of others.

    Refer to all Specific Outcomes. 

    UNIT STANDARD CCFO DEMONSTRATING 
    Demonstrate an understanding of the world as a set of related systems.

    Refer to all Specific Outcomes. 

    UNIT STANDARD ASSESSOR CRITERIA 
    N/A 

    REREGISTRATION HISTORY 
    As per the SAQA Board decision/s at that time, this unit standard was Reregistered in 2012; 2015. 

    UNIT STANDARD NOTES 
    It is strongly recommended that competency in the following Unit Standards is achieved prior to commencing learning towards this Unit Standard:
  • ID 252401: Comply with safety requirements in the medical or blood transfusion fields.
  • ID 119078: Use a GUI-based word processor to enhance a document through the use of tables and columns.
  • ID 13915: Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of HIV/AIDS in a workplace and its effects on a business sub-sector, own organisation and a specific workplace.
  • ID 257201: Apply quality practice in the medical laboratory.

    Course requirements:
  • The learner is required to be registered with the HPCSA as a Student Medical Laboratory Assistant for the duration of the period of learning.

    Matrix of Credits Assigned:

    Activity:
  • Tutoring:
    > Lecturer; 30 hours.
    > Learner/self study; 10 hours.

    Activity:
  • Practical:
    > On job; 150 hours.
    > Simulation; 10 hours.

    Total hours: 200 hours.
    Total credits: 20 credits.

    All actions are measured against the prescribed protocols or standard operating procedures (SOP) of the organization/institution where the learner is currently employed. The prescribed protocols/SOP are written instructions relating to specific tasks. These written instructions are issued to the learner, and signed once they have been studied. 

  • QUALIFICATIONS UTILISING THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
      ID QUALIFICATION TITLE PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL STATUS END DATE PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QA FUNCTIONARY
    Core  63189   National Certificate: Medical Laboratory Assistance  Level 3  NQF Level 03  Passed the End Date -
    Status was "Reregistered" 
    2012-06-30   


    PROVIDERS CURRENTLY ACCREDITED TO OFFER THIS UNIT STANDARD: 
    This information shows the current accreditations (i.e. those not past their accreditation end dates), and is the most complete record available to SAQA as of today. Some Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionaries have a lag in their recording systems for provider accreditation, in turn leading to a lag in notifying SAQA of all the providers that they have accredited to offer qualifications and unit standards, as well as any extensions to accreditation end dates. The relevant Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionary should be notified if a record appears to be missing from here.
     
    NONE 



    All qualifications and part qualifications registered on the National Qualifications Framework are public property. Thus the only payment that can be made for them is for service and reproduction. It is illegal to sell this material for profit. If the material is reproduced or quoted, the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) should be acknowledged as the source.