Discussions started by Zoe Brooks

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Zoe Brooks (with Tennyson)
by Zoe Brooks - Tuesday, 9 October 2018, 7:36 PM

This article by Westgard(s) is a great collection of comments from people all over the world -  that summarizes the state of confusion around MU in the laboratory  https://www.westgard.com/mu-labs-speak-out.htm

Can you please read and comment here?  Do you calculate MU?  If so, how?

We will talk more about this on Thursday.

Have a top quality day!



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When you start working with all the numbers, you see uncertainties, or confidence limits, everywhere.   Our goal is to determine if the patient or QC mean and SD changed significantly. which makes uncertainty of measurement critical ... as are significant figures, by the way.
If we measure the percent low and high risk patients each day, week and month for HbA1c, there are uncertainties in each data set.  For instance, in EP Evaluator software, they calculate confidence limits for the mean and SD saying: "95% Confidence Interval for SD: In a sense, this measures the "precision of the precision". It shows how much the SD might vary if the precision experiment was repeated with different experimental results. The width of the confidence interval depends on two factors: N and the intrinsic SD of the system. The reliability of the precision estimate improves as N increases."
If you have other comments or questions about MU, please send them.  Or please join us on Thursday at 2 PM for the online meeting.
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ARPI releases a guide to the Commonwealth Risk Management Policy
Posted By : mpearson

ARPI has released a guide to the Commonwealth Risk Management Policy.

The guide has been prepared by an ARPI Associate who is a Chief Risk Officer and wishes to
offer suggestions on how the Commonwealth’s Risk Management (Operational) Policy could be more
effective from a risk management perspective. Thus the views expressed focus on risk management.

The Guide to the Commonwealth Risk Management Policy is available here or via the Publications Page under ‘C’


Please note the comments!  We must look critically at everything.  (ZB)   Being published does not make something right.  


Interestingly the document has been drafted as if it is a template where the risk manager using it could simply replace the field "<Organisation Name>" in the paper with their associated institution name. A cut and paste of risk management policy if you prefer, although I trust few people worth their salt would treat a risk management guideline in such a way.
Apart from all of this, the document seems to focus on Risk Assessment Matrix methods which is something the world of risk management needs to progress beyond AND then there is this on risk appetite: "<Organisation Name> will not accept risks with a risk level of Very High or Extreme and requires all risks to be controlled so that no risk levels are greater than High." Oh dear me, this is so wrong on so many levels. I know I am coming across as a negative today and sorry for that, but this document is a FAIL in my opinion.


It sure is and it's the best apri came up with. Risk management is one step forward, 2 steps back ))

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This is risk management in a totally different area.  Do the comments below remind you of laboratory management?

"When is a risk no longer a risk? I ask this question many times when looking at risk profiles for any organization/industry. My view? When a risk is impacting the organization and being realized, it's a problem, not a risk and it requires special and focused attention. Usually one of several things happens:

1) it is not addressed adequately or at all,

2) controls are not effective,

3) leadership has their heads buried somewhere, or

4) the pain isn't severe enough to care about it. ..."

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Another interesting approach:

Skeptics about the FAIR model love to scoff at quantitative risk analysis and dismiss it as mere “guesswork.” I have encountered this assertion several times while conducting analyses and I welcome the challenge each time; I view it as an invitation to a discussion.

Generally, it is during the data collection or the results phase of the risk analysis process that the buzzwords “guesswork” or “guessing” are voiced. The conversation often unfolds somewhere along these lines: 

“This is all just guesswork.” – Skeptic 

“Hmm, that is a FAIR concern. Let’s step back a moment and reflect on the process... We’ve engaged XYZ  Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) to ask how often threats are trying to harm asset A, and evaluated the controls around asset A to determine how likely they will be able to overcome the controls and successfully cause harm. Each range is supported by a rationale that documents our assumptions as well as any industry references, if applicable. Do you think that was a beneficial exercise?” – Believer (a.k.a. Me)

“Yes, but… it is still just guessing.” – Skeptic

“OK. Let me ask a similar question. Have you ever engaged XYZ business SMEs to gather estimates for lost revenue, the number of people who would be involved in responding to an event, how long they would spend responding, crisis communication costs, etc.?” – Me 

“No.” – Skeptic

“Wait. Then how are you selecting a risk rating now?” – Me  


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