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Frequently Asked Questions About Surveys
and EXCEL

title
 

Updated June 29, 2007

Ordering Surveys and EXCEL?

What is the difference between EXCEL and Surveys?
Can I order simultaneously from EXCEL and Surveys?
Can I fax in my proficiency testing renewal forms?
If an analyte is offered only in certain mailings, do we have to order the product for the entire year?

Submitting Results

What should I do if I have not received my proficiency testing kit?
Can I use correction fluid to amend mistakes?
How long do I have to report my proficiency testing?
What happens if I forget to return the result forms?
If I fax my results, do I have to mail them?
How do I know if the CAP received my faxed results?
When will I be able to submit proficiency testing (PT) results via the Internet?

Submitting Results for Multiple Kits

If my laboratory receives multiple kits for a given Survey, does it matter on which kit I report my results?
Is it mandatory to return result forms for additional kits?

Evaluations

Am I able to access my evaluation online?
I noticed an error on our evaluation; will the CAP correct our evaluation?
What should I do if the results were submitted too late for evaluation?
Some of the Surveys do not have a CMS Performance Summary page—why not?

Ordering Surveys and EXCEL

What is the difference between EXCEL and Surveys?

The Surveys program is designed for hospital laboratories and reference laboratories. The EXCEL program is geared towards smaller hospital and physician office laboratories. By enrolling in the program that is intended for your size institution, you will be compared with laboratories that are most similar to yours.
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Can I order simultaneously from EXCEL and Surveys?

Yes, use the order form received with your catalog to order Surveys, EXCEL, and Quality Indicator products. If you are a new customer, use the order form found at the back of the catalog and on the Web site.
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Can I fax in my proficiency testing renewal forms?

Proficiency testing order renewal forms (Surveys/EXCEL, Q-TRACKS, Q-PROBES, LMIP) may be faxed. Check the order renewal form for the correct fax number.
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If an analyte is offered only in certain mailings, do we have to order the product for the entire year?

If an analyte is offered in some but not all mailings, the laboratory may order the Survey by mailing (e.g., VR3-A).
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Submitting Results

What should I do if I have not received my proficiency testing kit?

Call the Customer Contact Center at 1-800-323-4040 option 1; fax your inquiry to 1-847-832-8166; or e-mail contactcenter@cap.org. Customer Contact Center hours are Monday through Friday, 7:30 am to 5:30 pm Central Time.
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Can I use correction fluid to amend mistakes?

Yes. Correction fluid is accepted, but please be sure the fluid is dry before rewriting your responses. Do not use pencil.
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How long do I have to report my proficiency testing?

The date by which results are due is printed at the top of your result form.
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What happens if I forget to return the result forms?

Failure to return PT results for a testing event is considered unsatisfactory performance and will result in a score of “0.”
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If I fax my results, do I have to mail them?

If you choose to fax your results, do not mail them. Most result forms can be faxed to the College; however, check your kit instructions for detailed information.
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How do I know if the CAP received my faxed results?

Please retain your fax machine transmission confirmation. This serves as your receipt.

To access this information on the CAP Web site, go to e-LAB Solutions.

Note: Your laboratory must be opted in and you must be logged in to view this information.

  • Step 1: Get Connected
    Log In with your user ID and password. If you do not have an individual Web account, click on the Create an Account link to register.
  • Step 2: Opt In
    In March 2004, laboratory directors received letters with a CAP number and a CAP-provided PIN to opt in and activate their laboratories' data. When the laboratory director enters the CAP number and PIN, the laboratory is opted in to access advanced features online. If you need a new PIN to opt in your laboratory, contact the CAP Customer Contact Center at 800-323-4040 option 1.
  • Step 3: Request Access
    In order to access Web-based features specific to a laboratory, a laboratory employee must first request access to the laboratory's data. To do this, log in to the site, click on e-LAB Solutions, then on Request Access. Enter your laboratory's CAP number and your request will be sent to your laboratory's site administrator. The site administrator for the laboratory will assign security privileges and the request to access laboratory data will be granted or denied.

Due to processing requirements it may take up to two days to post the receipt status of faxed or mailed forms on the Web site.
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When will I be able to submit proficiency testing (PT) results via the Internet?

Online PT result submission has been available since January 1, 2005. Your laboratory must be opted in and you must be logged in to view this information. To access Result Form Data Entry on the CAP Web site, go to e-LAB Solutions.
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Submitting Results for Multiple Kits

If my laboratory receives multiple kits for a given Survey, does it matter on which kit I report my results?

If you order multiple kits of the same product, each kit will contain a unique result form. For example, if your laboratory has two blood gas instruments and you order two kits of the Blood Gas Survey AQ, one of the result forms will be labeled “SEQ# 01” while the other will be labeled “SEQ# 02.” The CAP will report results to CMS from the result form designated with “SEQ# 01.” This identifier appears in the top-right corner of the result form after the CAP number.
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Is it mandatory to return result forms for additional kits?

Yes, unless it is noted in the Kit Instructions that return of the result forms is not required. If the laboratory will be submitting results online, open and save at least one page of the result forms (for the additional kit) and then approve that page.
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Evaluations

Am I able to access my evaluation online?

Yes, beginning with the first shipments of 2005, evaluations have been available to view online. Note: your laboratory must be opted in and you must be logged in to view this information.

  • Step 1: Get Connected
    Log In with your user ID and password. If you do not have an individual Web account, click on the Create an Account link to register.
  • Step 2: Opt In
    In March 2004, laboratory directors received letters with a CAP number and a CAP-provided PIN to opt in and activate their laboratories' data. When the laboratory director enters the CAP number and PIN, the laboratory is opted in to access advanced features online. If you need a new PIN to opt in your laboratory, contact the CAP Customer Contact Center at 800-323-4040 option 1.
  • Step 3: Request Access
    In order to access Web-based features specific to a laboratory, a laboratory employee must first request access to the laboratory's data. To do this, log in to the site, click on e-LAB Solutions, then on Request Access. Enter your laboratory's CAP number and your request will be sent to your laboratory's site administrator. The site administrator for the laboratory will assign security privileges and the request to access laboratory data will be granted or denied.

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I noticed an error on our evaluation; will the CAP correct our evaluation?

  • If the error is due to your transcription error or failure to complete the result form appropriately, your entry cannot be reevaluated.
  • If the error is made by the CAP (e.g., scanning error), please contact the Customer Contact Center at 800-323-4040 option 1

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What should I do if the results were submitted too late for evaluation?

The evaluation will indicate code 41 (“Results for this kit were received past the evaluation cut-off date”). The laboratory will receive a Participant Summary Report that can be used to perform a self-evaluation (see Evaluation Criteria section).
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Some of the Surveys do not have a CMS Performance Summary page—why not?

Only Surveys that contain analytes regulated for proficiency testing will include a CMS Performance Summary page. Note: waived test results do not appear on the CMS Performance Summary page.
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