A27. Laboratory analyses & accreditation in Burkina Faso


About laboratories in Burkina Faso:
Clinical laboratories In 2002 the government of Burkina Faso created a specific department for clinical laboratories within the Ministry of Health whose mission is to coordinate the development of laboratory medicine. In 2004, the Department of Laboratories conducted a situation analysis on the status of clinical laboratory services in Burkina Faso. The study found that the laboratory system consisted of 160 public and private laboratories (national reference laboratories, regional hospital laboratories, and district medical center laboratories). Most laboratories (80%) failed to meet the basic requirements for adequate functioning: lack of laboratory supplies, reagents, equipment, and poor laboratory infrastructure (unique room for all laboratory works, cracked walls, broken ceilings, and no water and electricity supply). The results of this evaluation led to the development and adoption in 2006 of a national laboratory policy and strategic plan. One of the objectives of this policy was to improve the quality of laboratory services.

Quality assessment: The National External Quality Assessment (NEQA) program of Burkina Faso is a proficiency testing program mandatory for all laboratories in the country since 2006. NEQA was established through a Ministry of Health decree. The program runs two cycles per year and covers all areas of laboratories. The main challenges of the NEQA programme is funding, sourcing, and safe transportation of quality panels to all laboratories countrywide.


About Burkina Faso: Burkina Faso is a landlocked country in the Sahel region of West Africa. Its size is about 274,200 sq km (105,900 sq miles), with an estimated population of 14,017,262 and an annual population growth rate of 3.1%. With a gross national per capita income estimated in 2008 to be US $1,215 annually, Burkina Faso is among the least developed countries. Surveys show a crude mortality rate of about 11.8% in 2006. The most prevalent diseases of public health importance are malaria, acute respiratory infections, diarrheal diseases, tuberculosis, AIDS, and sexually transmitted infections. The epidemiologic profile of the country is also marked by a progressive increase in the burden of noncommunicable diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, and cancers.

Strategy for change

Accreditation, providing laboratory services, becoming finanially sustainable.
Background & Justification
Outcome Challenge
1. Time at Senexel to be able to implement the accrediation prodecures.
2. Internet connection for Senexel staff to communicate with HR&S Sweden.
3. Investment capital.
i) Assignt MSc students from a scientific institution. It should probably be like a practical training in their MSc studies, and the benefit for the students is experience from a laboratory and networking with the staff there. So that it becomes a win win.
ii) Expert advice by two HR&S senior experts on  accreditation, to improve efficiency.
RISE Burkina EP coach has been requested to please assess the possibility of assigning students from Ouagadougou University
Monthly zoom meetings between Senexel and HR&S Sweden.
HR&S advisers have shared accrediation documents and discussed procedures with Senexal CEO in a couple of zoom meetings.
Senexel CEO has attended a week-long HR&S Sweden webinar on laboratory management in March 2021, together with RISE Brkina EP coach and team-leader.
: Actions taken by different stakeholders as a result of the Activities. The PPs are not in control over Outcomes.
Progress markers: Measurable indicators of progress. They are linked to the Outcomes and are categorised as Levels: 1, 2 and 3.

Input: Resources required to arrange the Activities, can be for example funds, training, knowledge, skills, expert advice, coordination, communication, and infrastructure. Inputs have to be available; otherwise, they are reformulated into activities.
Customer survey:
The customers are identified as entities providing the resources. The survey is addressing our customers’ needs and challenges and proposes how the PP can solve the customer’s challenges. The answer to the questions: What are our potential customers’ problems, frustrations, and goals?
Stakeholder analysis: Do we have the important stakeholders in our team, who i) will benefit personally, ii) has the internal motivation, and iii) enough power of influence? Moreover, are all the entities required to reach impact represented in our team, for example, technicians, equipment suppliers, chief of the village, and/or head of the family.

Impact: HR&S defines Impact as Outcomes that have become sustainable over time and does not require backup from the programme. The Impact is quantitatively measurable as a result of our progress markers, and HR&S is accountable for the Impact. The Impact is measured at the time of closing the programme. In addition, HR&S  measures, if possible, if the Impact remains one, two, five and even ten years after after the programme has closed.
Possible Impact: The possible Impact is often a wide and qualitative statement, something that is desired and that may or may not happen as a consequence of our interaction, and often long after we have closed the programme.  We are not accountable for the possible impact, and we can also not claim it as the goal that we strategically work towards achieving. If it actually happens, then we often do not have evidence to what extent it was caused by our programme.

Lessons learned: How and what do we learn from our mistakes or things happening outside of our control.
Informed decisions:
How do we adjust the SfC are a result of lessons learned.
Testing the strength of evidence: Through scientific surveys are the strength of the evidence for claimed outcome and impact tested. The method describes the randomization approach, the control groups and the sample respondent group. Survey results include a compilation and an analysis of sample respondents/control group i) testimonies, individual ii) questionnaires and iii) interviews, and iv) focal group discussions.
: The baseline describes the situation before starting the programme and constitutes the control against which the programme achievements will be evaluated. A baseline is required both at the micro and the macro level.
Vision: On a larger and wider scale, why is this initiative relevant? We are not accountable for our vision.
Mission: We are accountable for our mission.



Qualified team

Senexel is managed by Boubacar Senou, Chemist in charge of laboratory quality and metallurgist, having worked for the National Public Health Laboratory of Burkina Faso, then for mining companies in Burkina Faso and in Canada. Member of the Ordre des Chimistes du Québec (Canada), the Canadian Institute of Mines (ICM) and the American Chemical Society (ACS), he has a deep understanding of the issues related to the quality of analytical results and their impact on customer activities.

International standards

The Senexel laboratory is operated according to ISO 9001 and ISO 17025 standards. Senexel shall participate in the interlaboratory tests.

Fast sample processing

Senexel operates with regular delivery times of 3 to 7 working days. Express treatments are also available.

Competitive prices

Senexel claims that their technology allows them to offer prices lower than the average for the Burkina Faso market.
Discounts may apply on large sample volumes.


The collaboration started small in 2020.

Expert advice & training

It benefits from the support of HR&S Senior Expert Advisers. Senexel staff attended the HR&S Laboratory Management Webinar, 10 hours in Mrcj 2021.

Strategy for change

We  develop and implemented a strategy for change for the partnership. The work targets chemical analyses and accreditation.

Social good

The poputation of Burkina Faso benefits from if the country has trustworthy laboratories.

Sustainable economy

HR&S / Action10 offesr soft loans with 10 % intrest during the start-up phase. Loans are paid back and can be used again at a higher level to scale the opertions until the laboratory is fully accredited and has a sustainable economy.


The HR&S Branch Burkina Faso, Head of Operations Stéphanie MAIGA, kindly offers to arrange with internship for SENEXEL from Ouagadougou University. The purpose is to free SENEXEL staff so tha they can focus on the different steps involved with the Accreditation.

Call for internships. Chemical laboratory analysis assistant.
Presentation of the Senexel Laboratory. Senexel is an environmental analysis laboratory created in 2018 and operating since April 2019. Senexel’s goal is to become a private sub-regional laboratory offering benchmark quality control analysis. The Senexel laboratory welcomes students trainees and makes a technical contribution to the training of trainees. This call offers an opportunity for student interns to work with a team experienced, to participate in the performance of chemical analyzes and to carry out their Bachelor or Master thesis if necessary. During this internship, the intern will have the opportunity to become familiar with advanced analytical instruments and various analysis techniques
Description of the course. The trainee is placed under the responsibility of the director and / or a technician of laboratory that will support it in its mission. The intern will participate in chemical analyzes, in the planning and execution of the activities entrusted to it. Senexel is an excellent framework for learning analytical chemistry.
Terms & Conditions. i) University training at license level, M1 or M2 in Chemistry, Water and Sanitation or other related areas. ii) Good command of IT tools, Office (Word, Excel, etc.) iii) Excellent writing skills, research and analytical skills, iv) Ability to work in a team, autonomous, sense of responsibility and work under pressure.
Place, date and duration of the internship. The internship takes place over a period of 6 months, in the Senexel laboratory, located at Ouagadougou Burkina Faso. It can take place full-time or part-time depending on the programme established by the Senexel laboratory. This internship is not carried out as part of an employment contract, and for this purpose, it does not give not give rise to remuneration.
End of internship At the end of the internship, the intern student must provide an internship thesis according to the regulations educational programme from its original institution, in paper and digital format. The work may be presented during a defense according to the regulations pedagogic.
Application files i) A resume, ii) A cover letter
Application deadline Please send your file to the attention of the laboratory director: boubacar.senou@senexel.com.
By 15/06/2021 at the latest. Start date of internship July 2021