College of American Pathologists

  NSH/CAP HistoQIP Program


Updated January 17, 2014

2013 NSH/CAP HistoQIP Program

The NSH/CAP HistoQIP Program now includes immunohistochemistry stains and an opportunity to earn free continuing education credit!

Join more than 1000 laboratories using this innovative program to make a good laboratory even better. Submit slides from your laboratory to assess your histologists’ technique in fixation, tissue processing and embedding, microtomy, staining, and coverslipping. Use this simple spreadsheet, Histology Quality Assurance and Benchmarking (Excel, 455 KB), to compare your laboratories’ results. Use the supplemental document, Nuclear Bubbling – Probable cause(s)/Potential Remedies (PDF, 444 KB) to accompany the 2013 HQIPBX-A, HQBX1-A, HQBX2-A, HQBX3-A participant summary results.

Pre-Microscopic Examination Specimen Handling Guidelines in Surgical Pathology Laboratory

In spite of the abundant guidelines and recommendations published for specimen handling and testing in a clinical pathology laboratory, relatively little literature is available for guidance of specimen handling in a surgical pathology laboratory. The following comprehensive table Pre-Microscopic Examination Specimen Handling Guidelines in Surgical Pathology Laboratory (PDF, 853 KB) is intended to serve as a general guideline for proper specimen handling from the time it is taken from the patient to the time a completed slide of the specimen is given to a pathologist for interpretation. This document does not relate to cytologic or clinical pathology samples.

Program Details for 2013

Each mailing will include an online education activity (included with the Final Critique) that multiple staff from laboratories participating in the HistoQIP program can access for free and earn CE credit. Click on the Enroll buttons below to access the activity. Note: If you are not logged in to the Web site, you will first be prompted to log in with your User ID and password before accessing the activity. If you do not have a user ID and log in for the site, Request An Account. You will need the Kit ID number and your CAP number (found on your HistoQIP evaluation or the mailing page of your Final Critique) to access this education activity.


Challenges per Shipment
H&E Uterus resection
H&E Spleen resection
IHC Desmin, uterus resection
IHC Calretinin, appendix
Special stain Basement membrane silver on kidney

H&E Stomach resection
H&E Fallopian Tube
IHC CK7, breast carcinoma
IHC Melan A, skin
Special stain Alcian blue (ph 2.5), small intestine

CAP/NSH HistoQIP Biopsy Series  HQIPBX

Challenges per Shipment
H&E Bladder biopsy
H&E Cervical biopsy
H&E Skin punch biopsy
H&E Stomach biopsy

H&E Colon biopsy
H&E Endometrial biopsy
H&E Prostate needle biopsy
H&E Skin excisional biopsy (large excision)

CAP/NSH HistoQIP Specialty Series  HQBX1, HQBX2, HQBX3

Stain/Tissue Product Code Challenges/
Gastrointestinal Biopsy Module          
H&E - Colon biopsy     1 1
H&E - Esophageal biopsy     1 1
H&E - Small intestinal biopsy     1 1
H&E - Stomach biopsy     1 1
Dermatologic Biopsy Module          
H&E - Alopecia biopsy     1 1
H&E - Skin excisional biopsy (large excision)     1 1
H&E - Skin punch biopsy     1 1
H&E - Skin shave biopsy     1 1
Urogenital Tract Biopsy Module          
H&E - Bladder biopsy (non-neoplastic)     1 1
H&E - Bladder biopsy (with urothelial carcinoma)     1 1
H&E - Prostate needle biopsy (non-neoplastic)     1 1
H&E - Prostate needle biopsy (with carcinoma)     1 1

Product Information
The HistoQIP Program is designed as an educational program to improve the preparation of histologic slides. For each set of slides submitted, participants will receive an evaluation specific to their laboratory, an educational critique, and a participant summary report that includes peer comparison data, performance benchmarking data, and information regarding best-performing procedures and techniques.

Twice each year, participating laboratories submit one stained and coverslipped glass slide from five different cases (two H&E-stained slides, two special stains, and one immunohistochemistry stain). All submitted slides will be recuts of specific surgical tissue types or positive control tissue that will vary from one challenge to the next. Submitted slides will be evaluated for histologic technique by an expert panel of histotechnologists, histotechnicians, and pathologists using uniform grading criteria. The following areas will be evaluated: fixation, tissue processing and embedding, microtomy, staining, and coverslipping.

To place your order, call the CAP at 800-323-4040 (or 847-832-7000) option 1 #.

Online Education: All Laboratory Staff Can Individually Participate and Earn Free CE Credit
Staff from laboratories participating in the HistoQIP program can now individually earn CE credits. The online education activities award CE credit for completing the readings and answering online learning assessment questions. Readings are developed by the CAP and NSH and can be found in the Final Critique or online. The online learning assessment questions are designed to reinforce concepts presented in the readings. For more information on objectives, target audience, and credits available, click on the Enroll button for the associated online education activity.

Access to both online activities is available and free of charge only to individuals from those laboratories that have participated in the HistoQIP program. A valid Kit ID number and CAP number must be entered to access the online portion of the education activity. These numbers can be found on your evaluation or on the mailing page of the Final Critique sent to your laboratory.

For more information, call a CAP Customer Contact Center representative at 800-323-4040 (847-832-7000), option 1 #.

CE Information
CE (Continuing Education for non-physicians): The CAP designates these education activities for a maximum of the stated number of credits/hours of continuing education. Each participant should claim only those credits/hours he/she actually spent in the activity.

These activities are acceptable to meet the continuing education requirements for the ASCP Board of Registry Certification Maintenance Program.

This activity is approved for continuing education credit in the states of California and Florida.

All material is ©2012 College of American Pathologists, all rights reserved.

Course Technical Requirements
View course technical requirements for specific technology needs to complete the CAP's online education activities.

Privacy Policy and Terms and Conditions
View Privacy Policy and Terms and Conditions for users of the CAP Web site.


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