Specimen Collection

Specimen Collection

Coming Soon…

Our Specimen Collection Guide is a living document which aims to provide clear guidelines for the collection of the majority of laboratory tests.


Blood Collection Information

See below for useful information regarding blood collections:

Blood Collection Guide
(quick reference of tube requirements for the most common blood tests)

BD Order of Draw
(recommended order of drawer for blood collection)


Swab Guides

For more information on swab collection please see our guides below:

Which Swab Guide (which swab to use for which test)


Labelling Criteria

Please note that samples will be discarded if they do not meet our labelling criteria.

A minimum of two points of identification (e.g. full name and NHI or DOB) are required on all specimens and forms to meet regulatory requirements.


Confidential Requests

In order to provide patient anonymity it is sometimes necessary to use a confidential ID code.  Our recommendation is that you use the universal code as follows:

  • The first two letters of the surname
  • The first letter of the given name
  • M or F (for male/female)
  • The DOB (six numbers)

For example Ann Smith 24/3/64 would be code SMAF240364.

When a code is used the NHI should be omitted, otherwise the system will match up the patient details.

  • If a reference number has been allocated for the patient – write the number in the ‘Drs Ref’ box on the requisition form.
  • If not using the universal code a minimum of four letters or numbers, or a combination of four letters/numbers is required, together with the word “Code”.