The Central Laboratory Service of the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital, together with its satellite laboratories forms the Lab SUB BMC. It is a well-equipped modern diagnostics facility located at the centre of the hospital bounded by the Gynaecology Department, the Department of Medicine (Medical block), the Maxillofacial and Haematology blocks as well as wards G and E. The facility is run by highly trained personnel made up of Biomedical Scientists, Technicians, Residents, Consultants and Support Services personnel. Together, they provide a comprehensive analytical, diagnostic and advisory service in Chemical Pathology, Haematology, Microbiology and Immunology.
The Biomedical Scientists with the assistance of Medical Laboratory Technicians provide expert analytical services in all departments of the laboratory. The Consultants are assisted by Residents to fulfil both clinical and laboratory roles within the hospital. Based on their specialty, they are organised into clinical teams to fulfil the special needs of patients which include interpretation of lab results.
The department operates a 24-hour service all days of the week, including public holidays on three shifts.
During the service hours of 08:00 to 17:00 hours a laboratory Officer/Client Services Officer (CSO) is at post and from whom information regarding test availability, advice and general information relating to operational procedures may be obtained.
Investigations of an urgent nature must always be made known to the Officer (CSO)prior to or when the sample is brought to the laboratory.
In the event that an urgent investigation is required outside of the regular working hours of 08:00 to 17:00 hours, the Biomedical Scientist(BMS)on duty in the department concerned should be first contacted.
By its nature, this handbook is unable to cover all the anticipated change in services that will be offered by the lab. However, senior members of the department are always happy to discuss the changing needs of users and to advice on the most appropriate choice of tests. This manual will be reviewed with the approval of laboratory management yearly.
Profile of SUB-BMC
Senior Clinical, Academic, Administrative, Scientific & Technical Staff
Education and Training
Continuing Education and In-Service Training
Routine Analytical Service
Routine analytical service covers in excess of 80% of the workload of the laboratory and represents those analytes measured on a daily basis which will normally be reported on the day the sample is received. Details of such analytes are listed in Appendix A.
Batched Analytical Service
Urgent Analytical Requests
All requests for urgent analysis must be made through the Officer/CSO when the request or specimen is brought in between the hours of 8.00 and 17.00 or the BMS on duty between the hours of 17.00 and 8:00. Arrangements during public holidays may vary. The laboratory should be contacted for specific details.
Urgent requests are handled individually as soon as the sample reaches the laboratory and the clinician telephoned when results are ready or sent via the Laboratory attendant or relatives of the patient.
Urgent requests are extremely demanding of the laboratory resources and so in order not to delay the truly urgent requests, the department operates the following strict policy for requests marked urgent.
Call Request For Stat Analysis
All Other Requests For Stat Analysis:
Major sources of analytical variation can be introduced by failing to adhere to recommended collection conditions. Such analytical variation may often not be apparent to the laboratory and can generate misleading results.
It is in the interest of all concerned to ensure that specimens are taken appropriately and delivered promptly to the laboratory; in particular, attention is drawn to the following in order to obtain valid results:
Chemical Pathology Dept
Preparation of the Patient
24-hour urine collection procedure
The laboratory however does not provide urine containers for 24-hour urine test. The client is expected to bring along for the preservative a clean plastic container with a secured lid large enough to contain urine collected over a 24 hour period.
Since some receptacles may contain corrosive materials patients must always be advised to avoid skin contact and splashes while using the receptacles and that on no account should any liquid in the bottle be tipped out of the bottle before use.
Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF)
CSF for GLUCOSE ANALYSIS is required in FLUORIDE OXALATE BOTTLE (GRAY TOP).Â
*Provisions are made for paediatric samples
EDTA TUBE (PURPLE TOP) is required for FBC, BF, Hb, BLOOD FILM FOR COMMENTS, SICKLING, Hb ELECTROPHORESIS tests.
Blood volume required for ESR tests should be at least 2mL.
BLOOD is required in an EDTA TUBE (PURPLE TOP)for MICROFILARIA TESTS. The sample should be taken between the hours of 22:00 and 2:00.
BLOOD is required in an EDTA TUBE (PURPLE TOP) for TROPHOZOITE COUNT. Blood can be sampled at any time.
URINE receptacles (containers) for Routine Examination and special tests are obtained directly from the reception/front desk at all hours in the lab. Urine required should be at least 20 mL in volume. Urine specimen should reach the lab within an hour of collection
STOOL containers for routine examination can be obtained directly from the reception/front desk at all hours in the lab. A spatula full of stool is required for the tests. Stool specimen should reach the lab within an hour of collection
Stool for occult blood
Swab Sticks: Sterile swabs can be obtained at the front desk of the central lab. Dry swabs would not be accepted.
Skin Snip: Patient should present to the laboratory on the day of testing. No preliminary preparation is required.
BLOOD for CULTURE AND SENSITIVITY (C/S) should be put into
– PAEDIC PLUS BOTTLE (PINK TOP) FOR PATIENTS/CLIENTS 12 YEARS AND BELOW;
Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF):
Immunology and Cell Biology Unit
– PLAIN BOTTLE WITH GEL (GOLD TOP) is required for MOST ROUTINE ASSAYS carried out by this section of the lab
In the event that a different tube is introduced; the wards will be appropriately communicated to.
Semen for Analysis
DNA tests for paternity testing and karyotyping.
What is expected during sampling
Payments for tests
Dna tests for paternity testing and karyotyping. Requesting for the dna test
*Paediatric samples should be sent to the child health lab and that for adults should be sent to the fevers unit lab.
Order- of-draw for multiple blood collection
A. BLOOD CULTURE OR BLOOD CULTURE BOTTLE (rotate tube 8-10 times)
Requests for lab investigations
Requests for lab investigations
Request forms and clinical information
Four Request forms are available for use and have been colour coded each representing one of the departments. Red is for Haematology, Blue for Chemical Pathology, Green for Microbiology and Yellow for Immunology. In all cases the form must be correctly and legibly completed with patient NAME, AGE, GENDER, CLINICAL DETAILS and REQUESTING DOCTORâ€™S NAME, SIGNATURE and DATE. Tests for different departments should be requested on their respective forms and not put together on one form. Tests required should be clearly indicated and where any test is not listed it should be clearly written on the request form. The Requesting DOCTOR’S CONTACT should be quoted.
Where all information is provided appropriately the speed of processing of request, and the results of the tests are influenced positively, leading to a more rapid turnaround of report. Also it will allow the department to correctly interpret results and provide follow-up tests where appropriate.
Submission of samples
Criteria for sample rejection
2. Generally for ALL UNSATISFACTORY SAMPLES as follows:
3. Generally for ALL REQUISITION INADEQUACIES as follows:
Turn Around Times (TAT)
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