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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Pre-analytical Challenges Encountered with Capillary Blood Collection and Testing. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Identification of Patient

Upon entering the room, the patient should be greeted and properly identified. Correct identification is key to patient safety and correct test results. For in-patients, the name, date of birth, and medical record number should be matched with the information on the requisition form and patient's identification band. For an out-patient, there will not be an identification band, so the information should be confirmed by using a form of identification such as a driver's license. The patient should also be asked to spell their first and last names and state their date of birth.
For infant or very young patients who may or may not have an identification band, a nurse, guardian, or family member could verify the identity of the patient by providing the full name, address, birth date, and medical record number (if the patient is assigned one). The name and relationship to the patient of the identifying person should be documented on the requisition form.
Extreme caution should be taken on neonate siblings as they present a heighten risk of identification error. The healthcare provider should strictly follow the facility's protocol for such cases.
After successful identification is made, the patient should be given a brief explanation of the procedure and any questions should be addressed to reduce patient anxiety.