Changes concering scheme management and the evaluation of schemes (explanatory document T033 and policy rule BR012)

09-03-2017

Changes in explanatory document RvA-T033 and publication of Policy Rule BR012

Recently the Dutch Accreditation Council (RvA) changed explanatory document RvA-T033 ‘Explanation of the requirements for conformity assessment schemes’. This explanation is relevant for bodies which develop conformity assessment schemes (hereinafter referred to as ‘schemes’) and/or (want to) use a scheme from an external party under accreditation.
In relation with this explanatory document a new policy rule BR012 ‘Policy rule for evaluation of conformity assessment schemes’ has been published. RvA Regulation R013 ‘Regulation for the Assessment and Acceptance of Scheme Managers’ has been withdrawn.

The purpose of the changes is to harmonise the procedures of the RvA with those of its colleagues in Europe. As much as possible a connection has been made with the principles of the EA-1/22 document for international schemes . The opinion of the European Commission that an accreditation body should only perform accreditation activities against harmonized standards also has been given meaning to. The Ministry of Economic Affairs has confirmed this opinion.

The assessment and acceptance of scheme owners is therefore no longer a task of the RvA.
Below a summary of the important changes.

Explanatory document T033
Document T033 explains the requirements for conformity assessment schemes for the different  harmonized standards used for accreditation. This new version has been drafted for the purpose of the self-assessment the bodies have to carry out for schemas they use. The RvA will therefore no longer perform so called ‘T033 assessments’, but expects that the bodies applying for accreditation have done this themselves. In case of in-house schemes this self-evaluation will be input for the assessment of the body seeking accreditation. In the case of a scheme from an external scheme manager, the RvA will evaluate the scheme based on this self-evaluation of the conformity assessment body/bodies applying for accreditation.

This version of T033 has changed considerably compared to version 3 of February 2014. The document is now limited to an explanation of the requirements and no longer contains a description of the process of the assessment of schemes by the RvA. The explanation of the structure of accreditation and conformity assessment as specified in ISO / IEC 17000 is significantly shortened because this structure and the concepts are assumed to be known by the users of this document. A detailed explanation of the situation in which this document is applied has been added.

Bodies applying for accreditation for a new scheme, or wanting to implement changes in a scheme, after February 1st 2017 shall submit a self-assessment in accordance with T033 together with the application for accreditation.

Click here for the new version of explanatory document RvA-T033.

 

Policy Rule BR012
Policy rule BR012 describes the policy and rules of the Dutch Accreditation Council RvA with regard to the evaluation of conformity assessment schemes.

The main topics covered in this policy rule are:

  • Chapter 1 indicates when the policy rule is applicable.
  • The policy rule distinguishes:  
    • national schemes,
    • multinational schemes for which evaluation according to EA-1/22 has been applied to;
    • schemes of which the CAB itself is not scheme owner and of which the scheme owner doesn’t coordinate the evaluation;
    • legal schemes, for which the use of the scheme and accreditation is prescribed by a Ministry in regulations.
  • The policy rule describes the conditions under which cooperation with an external scheme owner for the evaluation of a scheme can take place.
  • The policy rule describes how the RvA indicates that schemes of external scheme owners has been evaluated with a positive result and for which RvA accreditation can be granted.
  • An evaluation of a national scheme will only take place when an application for accreditation has been received.
  • The policy rule describes how is dealt with non-conformities in schemes which are found during an assessment of a CAB.

Click here for the new policy rule RvA-BR012.
Click here for the announcement in the ‘Staatscourant’ (Dutch)