Preanalytical: Proper Transport of Specimens

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Preanalytical: Proper Transport of Specimens

Transport of specimens to the laboratory must be done in accordance with your facility's specimen transportation plan. Often, placement of the primary specimen container into a properly sealed biohazard bag is required for in-house specimen transport.
Criteria for specimen rejection include improperly labeled specimen containers/slides, leaking specimens, and specimen containers submitted without a secondary leakproof biohazard bag (or alternate appropriate container secondary packaging). Again, refer to your facility's specimen transportation plan.
If the specimen is to be shipped to a reference laboratory (or to your local or state public health laboratory), follow all pertinent labeling, packaging, and shipping instructions for safe transport of infectious substances and diagnostic specimens. (Always use adequate absorbent material to absorb the entire contents if a leak should occur.) Follow instructions for providing a leak-proof secondary container and an outside box.
The following URL contains specimen packing and shipping guidance for infectious specimens:
Specimens in formalin are not usually considered diagnostic because they have been biologically inactivated and preserved. Biopsy mailers may be used for these specimens. Noninfectious specimens containing small quantities of a flammable preservative such as ethanol must be marked using UN 1170 (ethanol) packaging. Do not send vials containing more than 30 mL of alcohol