Specimen Accessioning and Processing (Lab Receiving)

Specimen Accessioning and Processing (Laboratory Receiving) is the section of the laboratories where specimens are received, sorted, entered into the Laboratory Information System, labelled with barcoded labels and processed. Processing a specimen may include mixing the specimen to ensure that all the components are evenly distributed throughout the sample or spinning the specimen in a centrifuge to separate the serum/plasma layer from the red cells. Once the processing step has been completed, the specimens are forwarded on to the various divisions of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine for testing.

Specimens are accepted in the laboratories at the various sites of Capital Health from couriers, physicians, private collectors and the general public. These specimens must be collected according to standards established by the Clinincal and Laboratory Standards Institute (CLSI) and transported to the laboratory in a timely fashion following Transportation of Dangerous Goods (TDG) regulations. Refer to Laboratory Test Catalogue for specific collection, handling and delivery requirements. The Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine receives and processes over one million specimens each year.

Capital Health research specimens for tests that must be sent to referral laboratories are processed and shipped fron Central Accessioning and Processing at the Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Centre (QEII HSC). At any given time we support approximately 150 research projects. An average of 500 specimens are referred to other laboratories for special testing each week. This area is open Monday to Friday from 7:00am - 3:00pm.

Specimens for water testing are to be delivered to the Environmental Services Laboratory, Mackenzie Building, 5th floor, Room 526. Specimens will be accepted in the Specimen Accessioning and Processing area after 4:30pm and on weekends and holidays.

For information regarding independent phlebotomy agreements contact: IPOffice@cdha.nshealth.ca