Reported antimicrobial efficacy without laboratory proficiency is meaningless
Reports that make sense
The IAC provides uniform report formats that are easy to understand. The IAC helps its members understand why certain method modifications are important to achieve test results that accurately reflect the performance of an antimicrobial on a given substrate.
The International Antimicrobial Council Antimicrobial Proficiency Program was developed by the IAC to provide more consistent application of existing standards and the uniform application of those standards among antimicrobial testing laboratories. The IAC-APP utilizes modified testing standards and protocols established by AATCC, ASTM, ISO and JIS. Independent scientists and technical advisors who serve on the AATCC, ASTM and ISO committees also provide technical input and protocol reviews for the IAC-APP. Individuals and laboratories holding IAC-APP certification not only meet initial testing requirements but also participate in semi-annual measurement reviews. The IAC-APP logo indicates that full compliance with international standards and regulations have been met.
The IAC customizes existing test standards to meet the needs of its members so that the testing correlates to the use and abuse conditions that their treated products will be exposed to in the real world. The objective of this work is to help members develop customized test methods to quickly, accurately and reproducibly measure the performance of antimicrobials on treated articles. IAC representatives work closely with its members and various standards organizations to refine and improve existing test standards and promote the adoption of newly developed test methods to help meet this objective.
Reports that inform
Uniform test reports that accurately reflect the procedures and protocols that were used during testing are an important part of any testing regime. Too often test reports fail to indicate what modifications were made to the test method and why those modifications were made. Method modifications are a standard course within microbiological testing but the reasoning behind the modifications should always be explained and understood.
Antimicrobial efficacy is determined through laboratory testing using standardized test methods but the breadth of the methods allows for differing procedures to be used. These differing procedures within and between laboratories can cause test results to vary significantly. The IAC provides training to provide a more uniform application of test methods
Test Method Selection
Selecting the correct test method for the specific antimicrobial being used and substrate being tested is essential to accurately determine the antimicrobial performance. The IAC educates laboratories, brands and retailers on what test methods are appropriate for the various antimicrobials and substrates.