47.0 Specimen Labeling


Title of Manual: Specimen Collection

Version No: 1.0

Title: Specimen Labeling

Effective Date: 12/20/10
Revised Date: 06/23/14

Document #: GPA.SPC.47.0


I. PURPOSE

The Purpose is to establish a standardized procedure to be followed by the phlebotomist for the proper labeling of specimens. It is extremely important that all specimens are properly labeled to ensure patient safety and to expedite the testing process. An improperly labeled specimen may require recollection
and/or test to be repeated.

This is to be performed by all personnel in the phlebotomy section who have been trained on
specimen labeling.

II. MATERIALS

Reagents

Supplies

Equipment

● Permanent Marker


III. PROCEDURE

1. When patient arrives ask he/she to state their full name and date of birth. Compare the information given
    to the encounter form or the requisition provided.
2. After collection the following information must be on the label Full Name, Date of Birth, Date of     Collection, and Collectors Initials. All tubes must be labeled before attending to another patient.
3. Patient initials, nicknames or abbreviated versions are not considered adequate identification.
4. Write all information legibly.
5. Apply the appropriate label immediately after the specimen is collected. Never pre-label specimen
    containers with the exception of handwriting the patients name on urine collection containers.
6. Collector must verify that the date and time of collection on the label is correct. The collector’s initials
    should be written on the label after placing it on the specimen.
7. On each tube there should be the patients hand written information on the specimen container and a label
    from the manual requisition.

Pour off Tubes
When submitting a pour off tube to the clinical laboratory, the same labeling requirements apply as those mentioned above. In addition, the following requirements must be followed:
    a. The specimen source must be identified on the pour off tube. Be specific. Urine and serum look the same
        and plasma could be interpreted as EDTA or Citrated. The laboratory will not assume the sample type
        based on the test ordered.
    b. Hand written information must be on the pour off tube even if a manual requisition label is used.

Blood collection tube guidelines
1. Collect appropriate tubes according to test requested ensuring you collect enough tubes to be sent to
    multiple departments.
2. The top of the tube (cap or stopper) should be to the left of the patient’s last name. The patient’s last name
    should be at the top of the tube.
3. Place label such that the whole label will fit onto the tube as near to the tube cap as possible. Do not
    obscure any hand written information on the tube.
4. When labeling a screw top container place the label in the container itself and not on the lid so that the
    container is labeled after the lid is removed.

Specimen labeling errors from IOP / physician office
1. If an unlabeled specimen is collected by a phlebotomist, clinical lab staff or client services will notify
    the IOP. The phlebotomist will notify the physician and patient for recollection.
2. If there is a name discrepancy on the specimen, clinical lab staff or client services will notify the
    phlebotomist for a verbal confirmation.
3. Phlebotomy management will review the unlabeled / name discrepancy specimen with employee and take
    appropriate disciplinary action.

IV. QUALITY CONTROL

N/A

V. CALCULATIONS/CALIBRATION

N/A

VI. INTERPRETATIONS

N/A

VII. METHOD PERFORMANCE SPECIFICATIONS

N/A

VIII. REFERENCES

Procedures for the collection of Diagnostic Blood Specimens by Venipuncture;
Approved Standard – 5th Edition NCCLS, Wayne, PA, 2003 Vol. 23, H3-A5.

IX. RELATED DOCUMENTS

N/A

X. DOCUMENT HISTORY

X - MINOR REVISION
(Laboratory Director’s Signature on Original Subsequent Document Attached)

MAJOR REVISION
(Requires Laboratory Director & Department Director Signature - where applicable)

Reason for Change

2/10/14 New Document Control Format

6/23/14 Moved to Specimen Collection Manual



Laboratory Director

(Signature)

Date

Natalie Depcik-Smith, MD
(Print)



Department Director

(Signature)

Date

Robert M. Gay, M.D.
(Print)



Designee

Date

(Print)

(Signature)

(Print)

(Signature)

(Print)

(Signature)

(Print)

(Signature)

(Print)

(Signature)



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