Blood Specimen Collection


• Gather supplies. (Gloves, antiseptic, vacutainer, pen, labels, bag, etc.)

• Confirm the patient’s ID using two identifiers.

• Ensure you have the appropriate tubes assembled in the correct order for the draw.

(Blood samples must be drawn in the correct order to avoid cross-contamination of additives between tubes.)

Vacutainer Blood Collection Tubes

Vacutainer Blood Collection Tubes

Note: Collection tube colors vary for different manufacturers. Always follow your facility’s protocol for collection and order of draw.

• Follow facility guidelines, policies, procedures, and protocols relevant to the type of blood draw needed (peripheral venipuncture, subclavian central line, peripherally inserted central catheter, etc.), and prepare the client accordingly.

• Fill blood tubes to the indicator line (about ⅔ full). Fill all other required tubes. Gently rotate each tube as it is removed to mix any additives with the blood sample.

• Ensure that each sample is correctly labeled in the presence of the patient, and then send the tubes to the lab in a biohazard bag along with any required paperwork.

Rejection Criteria for Laboratory Specimens: 

• Patient identification is uncertain (unlabeled or illegible).

• The specimen has been handled, preserved, transported, or stored in such a manner that results for the ordered tests would be unreliable, including:

• A coagulation tube is only partially filled.

• The specimen is hemolyzed from having been handled roughly.

• A specimen for a CBC or coagulation testing contains clots.

• A specimen requiring refrigeration is sent at room temperature.

• The specimen is not protected from exposure to light when required.

• The specimen is collected in an outdated tube.