Blood Bank Lab Specimen

Blood Bank Specimen Labeling Requirements

Follow the Blood Collection - Labeling requirements. For patients who are transfusion candidates, please observe the following guidelines. If a sample is being collected for pre-surgical, pre-admit or pre-transfusion testing, the patient may need a wristband attached at the time the sample is collected. Wristbands are the sole source for properly identifying patients when blood and/or blood components are transfused. For this reason it is critical that specimen labels and wristband information match perfectly.

The following restrictions apply:

  • If the patient has NOT received blood or been pregnant in the past three months and surgery or transfusion is anticipated within the next seven days, attach a wristband.
  • If the patient HAS received blood or been pregnant in the past three months and surgery or transfusion is anticipated within the next three days, attach a wristband.

Wristbands (supplied by the Blood Bank) must have the following information:

a) Patient's name (first, last)
b) Patient's unique alpha-numeric identifier (medical record number, social security number, etc.)

  • For pre-surgical, pre-admit or pre-transfusion test requests, please fill out one of the Blood Bank stickers (supplied by the Blood Bank) and attach it to the orders being sent to the laboratory.
  • Computer generated specimen labels are unacceptable for pre-transfusion specimens. Specimen labels must be hand-written with patient name and unique alpha-numeric identifier being taken directly off the patient's wristband. Date/time of collection and the phlebotomist ID must also appear on the specimen label.

Autologous and Directed Blood Requests
The McLaren Northern Michigan Laboratory Blood Bank offers an autologous and directed donor program in conjunction with the Great Lakes Region American Red Cross. These options are available for elective surgeries and non-emergency medical transfusions. The units will be collected, tested and processed by Red Cross, then transported to our Blood Bank for storage.

Requests for either autologous or directed donor unit collections MUST be initiated by the patient's physician. Requests should be made by phone to the Great Lakes Region American Red Cross (800.968.4283 extension 324).

Because of the time period required for donations, testing and transport of units, requests should be made to the American Red Cross as early as possible before the intended date of surgery or transfusion. The Red Cross requires a minimum of five days to process and transport the blood to our Blood Bank.