Quality Assurance Scheme Development Group

The Quality Assurance Scheme Development Group (QASDG) will develop the European Quality Assurance Scheme for Breast Cancer Services (the European QA scheme) to set common quality and safety requirements for person-centred breast cancer services in Europe. The scheme will cover all the processes of breast cancer care (screening, diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation & supportive care, follow-up & survivorship care and palliative care) and will be underpinned by the accreditation legal framework and evidence from guidelines.

The QASDG discusses and selects the requirements within virtual working environments and in meetings organised every three months. The initial draft documents and the final versions before piloting are subject of open calls for feedback launched online. After piloting, the so validated scheme will become operative on voluntary basis throughout Europe.

The members are also invited to contribute to the other ECIBC objectives, the Digital Mammography Training Template and the European Guidelines Platform covering all processes of care (from screening to end-of-life care).  

The QASDG is supported by the external contractors EA- European Co-operation for Accreditation for the accreditation legal framework and for the coordination of national accreditation bodies, by CCIb –Iberoamerican Cochrane Centre for literature review and by IQ healthcare to develop indicators.

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Niall Phelan

Niall Phelan

QASGD Associated Member

Niall Phelan BSc(Applied Physics)1989, MSc(Physics)1998, has been working as a medical physicist since 1989 and is presently Chief Physicist at BreastCheck Ireland, which delivers population based mammography screening to eligible women through a network of four screening clinics and sixteen mobile units. Since the inception of the screening programme in 1999, Niall has been responsible for the provision of medical physics and quality assurance services and currently leads a team of four medical physicists who provide centralised scientific support of quality assurance, imaging optimisation and digital image management.
Niall has extensive experience in conventional and digital mammography imaging, equipment evaluation and quality assurance for breast screening and led the implementation of digital mammography imaging and enterprise PACS throughout the breast screening service in Ireland which was one of the first screening programmes to make the transition exclusively to digital imaging. Niall is currently involved in the provision of breast tomosynthesis imaging and establishing associated guidelines for quality assurance.
Since the inception of the Irish breast screening programme, Niall has made substantial contributions to the provision of high quality and successful breast screening in Ireland including the development of quality assurance guidelines and the technical and clinical evaluation of the screening programme as well as leading a number of research projects within the BreastCheck clinical research group which have published and presented their work widely.

Declaration of interests



Last update: 2018