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Environmental Health Services - Quality Assurance

Quality Assurance Project Plan

QA project plans coupled with SOPs define specific project QA/QC requirements. This approach identifies the parameters to be measured and discusses the QA activities to be conducted during sampling, analysis, and data validation stages of the project. The document entitled EPA Requirements for Quality Assurance Project Plans, EPAQA/R-5, Final, March 2001 (pdf) provides detailed instructions for preparing QA project plans. The Office of Quality Assurance has published a Guidance Document For Preparing Quality Assurance Project Plans for Environmental Monitoring Projects/Studies, September 2008 (pdf). The guide states SCDHEC Policy on QAPPs and includes some examples.

Submittal of QA Project Plans

Mailing Address:
Office of Environmental Laboratory Certification
2600 Bull St.
Columbia, SC 29201

Shipping Address:
Office of Environmental Laboratory Certification
State Park Health Center
8500 Farrow Rd. Bldg #12
Columbia, SC 29203

Contact Information:
Phone: (803)896-0970
FAX: (803)896-0850

QAPP Preparation

The QAPP is the formal document describing in comprehensive detail the necessary QA/QC and other technical activities that must be implemented to ensure that the results of the work performed will satisfy the stated performance criteria. The QAPP must provide sufficient detail to demonstrate that:

  • the project technical and quality objectives ( Data Quality Objectives) are identified and agreed upon;
  • the intended measurements or data acquisition methods are appropriate for achieving project objectives;
  • assessment procedures are sufficient for confirming that data of the type and quality needed and expected are obtained; and
  • any limitations on the use of the data can be identified and documented.

In order to be effective, the QAPP must specify the level or degree of QA/QC needed for the particular environmental data operation. Because this will vary according to the purpose and type work being done, SCDHEC will evaluate QA/QC applied to a project commensurate with :

  • purpose of the environmental data collection
  • type of work to be done
  • intended use of the data


There are two basic formats to use in writing the Quality Assurance Project Plan. They are the Proposal Quality Assurance Plan (PQAP) and the more detailed QA Project Plan(QAPP). Depending on the level of detailed required, the decision to accept the less formal PQAP is left to the DHEC Project Officer and SQAMO/QA Officer.

For additional information, contact:  (803) 896-0862