Specimen Labeling and Transport


Specimens must be labeled with the patient’s full first and last name, a secondary unique identifier (e.g., date of birth, medical records number), and the date and time the specimen was collected. All specimens should be labeled in the presence of the patient.  The patient identifiers on the specimen tube must match those provided on the laboratory test request form.

Please wear gloves and adhere to all standard precautions while handling specimen.

  1. Specimens that are transported in house or by courier must be placed in the appropriate resealable specimen bag. Make sure the specimen bag is tightly sealed to avoid leaking. Place paperwork in the outer pocket and NOT inside with the specimen. Important: The request form should not be wrapped around the specimen or inside the transport container.
  2. Any specimens sent through the USPS mail must meet federal and USPS transport regulations.
  3. When using a commercial carrier (e.g., FedEx) the following guidelines (IATA Packing Instruction 650) are to be utilized:
    • Watertight primary receptacle
    • Watertight secondary receptacle
    • Absorbent material, sufficient to absorb the entire contents of all primary receptacles, must be placed between the primary receptacle and the secondary receptacle.