A survey of Australian haematology reference intervals

Leanne Sinclair, Sara Hall, Tony Badrick*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


This study was designed to create a snapshot of Australian haematology reference intervals (RIs) in use, in particular red cell parameters. We present an analysis of survey results conducted across Australian laboratories between November 2012 and January 2013. All Australian laboratories enrolled in the Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia Quality Assurance Program (RCPA QAP) were invited to participate in the December 2012 Survey Monkey survey, with a response from 85 laboratories (17%) received. The scope included laboratory demographics (location, size/throughput, and network), RIs in use for the full blood count and selected derived parameters, their frequency of revision, source and statistical approach for derivation. Further questions related to uncertainty of measurement, pregnancy values, paediatric/adult cut-off, haematology profiles reported and the use of extended parameters. There is more consistency with some upper and lower limits than others, and wide ranges for reported uncertainty of measurement (UM). There is no apparent consistency with RIs used for particular instruments and technologies. When laboratories change their RIs, most obtain them from a text book, paper or another laboratory and have difficulty in determining the source. If they do determine their own, most don't have a standard operating procedure and calculations are not consistent in terms of sample size and statistical methods used. We have presented evidence of the wide variations in RIs used in Australian laboratories and that arguably these do not differ significantly from each other. The paediatric age cut-off requires standardisation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)538-543
Number of pages6
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Erythrocyte parameters
  • Pregnancy intervals
  • Reference intervals
  • Survey


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