The Laboratory and Testing Industry Organisation Code of Conduct

1. Introduction

It is a condition of membership of the Laboratory and Testing Industry Organisation (LTIO) that members accept and agree to abide by this Code of Conduct at all times. Members are required to endorse the LTIO Code of Conduct and to adopt and observe the principles and duties set out in it. Members are expected to behave in the spirit of the Code and not just to the letter of the Code.

All members must be accredited by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS).

Conduct in relation to the LTIO Code:

  1. Members are expected to observe the highest standards in the practice of providing diagnostic testing. Members have a responsibility to deal fairly and honestly with fellow members, professionals, the industry, other industries and professions, suppliers, intermediaries, regulators, Government officials, the media, colleagues, and the public.
  2. Members are expected to understand and observe this Code, any amendments to this Code, and any other Code that might be incorporated to existing Code.
  3. Members are expected to follow any guidance issued by the Association and conform to best practice as expressed in the guidance.
  4. Members will uphold this Code and will work alongside other members to uphold it. Any member that is found to knowingly cause or permit a colleague to act in a contradictory manner to the Code will be deemed to be in breach of the Code.
  5. Members will not conduct themselves or engage in any behaviour that is seen as detrimental to the reputation of the industry and Association.
  6. Members have a duty to ensure that any information that is disseminated to healthcare professionals, regulators, policy makers is accurate and will not cause any harm to health.

Conduct towards colleagues:

  1. Members are expected to adhere to the highest standards of accuracy and will not misrepresent the truth or exaggerate claims.
  2. Members will not intentionally damage the reputation or practice of other member organisations or other businesses.
  3. Members will conduct themselves in a manner without causing offence on the grounds of gender, race, religion, disability or any other form of discrimination or unacceptable reference.

Diagnostic products:

  1. Members handling diagnostic testing and equipment should be professionally trained and possess the necessary technical knowledge when discussing the company’s products and medical offerings.
  2. Members shall not mislead or exaggerate the performance of their products without sharing relevant evidence to justify these claims.
  3. Members shall take the utmost care to ensure the safety and security of diagnostic products in their possession.

Pricing:

  1. Do not agree with your competitors or anyone else to:
      a. Fix the price of your products.
    • b. To limit your production or limit supply to the market.
    • c. To limit or control your investments.
    • d. To control technical developments in the market.

Regulation:

1. Members must adhere to any relevant regulation that covers the diagnostic industry. This includes any regulation by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), the United Kingdom Health Security Agency (UKHSA), the Competitions Market Authority (CMA), and any other regulation or legislation that covers the diagnostic industry.

2. Members must comply with the Bribery Act 2010 and any other regulation that could reasonably affect their business.

3. Members shall not breach codes of professional conduct from other healthcare bodies (such as the ABPI and PAGB Codes of Practice).

Membership eligibility:

For the year after the trade association is founded, or until such time as an independent mark of quality system is established, companies which provide testing services direct to the public will be eligible to apply for membership only if they have a Trust Pilot rating of 3.5 or above.

2. Code Enforcement

An individual or member organisation may wish to submit a complaint against a member if they believe the member has breached the Code.

All complaints should be submitted to the Company Secretary, who may clarify the nature of the complaint with the complainant, and will decided whether a prima facie case for investigation exists. Vexatious complaints will not be considered.

Complainants must clearly identify which clauses have been breached by the member organisation and must supply any relevant evidence to the Company Secretary.

In the first instance where a prima facie case for investigation is determined, the LTIO secretariat will attempt a process of mediation and arbitration between complainant and member. Where this is not satisfactory to both parties, the formal complaint will be handed to the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR).

The CEDR conclusion will be binding on all parties, including the LTIO.

All parties shall bear their own costs in this complaints process.

The Advisory Board may at its discretion make public the conclusions of the CEDR process.

3. Overview and Review of the Code of Conduct

The Code will be reviewed by the LTIO Advisory Board at least annually, under the guidance of the Institute for Business Ethics, whose recommendations will not be rejected without good reason.

Upon publication of any relevant guidance by the CMA, MHRA, and UKHSA it is the default position of the LTIO for that to be reflected automatically in the Code.