The top 10 considerations for factors contributing to blood sample integrity and quality

Last edited: | Sample Integrity - Back to overview

1. Meeting the patient

First impressions count. This brief opportunity should be used to take control of the blood collection procedure, by exuding calm. Attention should be paid to a clean and hygienic appearance to underline a professional attitude and assure the patient and encourage confidence about the upcoming procedure.

2. Identification of the patient

The patient must be correctly identified, either verbally, in written form or electronically via barcode scan. A case of mixed identity can lead to serious problems, especially in the case of a misdiagnosis and inappropriate treatment.

3. Thorough evaluation of veins

When a thorough vein assessment is carried out before the procedure, a decision can be made on the best possible vein, meaning for example good refill rate, avoidance of bifurcations and understanding which needle size and product type is most appropriate for the vein conditions.

4. Good hygiene practice

Hands should be washed or sanitized between patients and gloves should be worn during the procedure helps to ensure that there is no cross-contamination.

5. Tourniquet application

A sufficient amount of pressure is 40mmHg [1], to make veins more prominent without blocking any blood flow. Tourniquets should not be applied for longer than 1 minute [2].

6. Order of draw

Observing the CLSI GP412 recommended order of draw helps ensure sample integrity by preventing carryover of additives that may interfere with subsequent samples. Taking tubes in the wrong order could furthermore invalidate results altogether due to this risk of additive contamination.

7. Invert samples

When a sample tube is filled, the tube is fully inverted 5-10 times or 4-5 times if a sodium citrate tube. One inversion is turning upside down, then upright again.

8. Allow serum samples to clot

In a standard tube this will be at least 30 minutes, but there are some rapid clot tube versions on the market, containing fibrin to speed up the process.

9. Store tubes upright

This helps keep samples intact, preventing gel or blood drops becoming attached to the rubber stopper and promotes clotting.

10. Transport as soon as possible

To ensure samples are analyzed whilst in the best possible condition, transport to the laboratory as soon as possible, ensuring that the samples are not exposed to extremes of temperature.

[1] WHO guidelines on drawing blood: best practices in phlebotomy, 2010, ISBN 978 92 4 159922 1

[2] CLSI GP41, Collection of Diagnostic Venous Blood Specimens, 7th Edition, April 2017

Safety and value, it’s in our blood

Protecting patients, clinicians and accuracy are topics to be covered in more detail here in the coming months. To ensure you don’t miss out, subscribe to the series here.

Please select your intention and contact the person who is responsible for you!

* required field


This product information is addressed exclusively to healthcare professionals. Devices of Greiner Bio-One are to be used by properly trained healthcare professionals only in accordance with the relevant Instructions for Use (IFU). For a listing of indications, contraindications, precautions and warnings, please refer to the Instructions for Use which accompanies each product or is available for download from our website at (Download Center). For more information contact your local Greiner Bio-One sales representative or visit our website. 

All information is provided without guarantee despite careful processing. Any liability, warranty or guarantee of Greiner Bio-One GmbH is excluded. All rights, errors and changes are reserved. If not stated otherwise, Greiner Bio-One GmbH has all copyrights and/or other (user-)rights in this documents, in particular to signs such as the mentioned (word-picture-)brands and logos. Any use, duplication or any other use of the rights of Greiner Bio-One GmbH is expressly prohibited.

Testimonials appearing on this blog communicate their individual experiences regarding the use of our products and/or services. The opinions expressed in this publication are those of the interview partner; they do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of Greiner Bio-One.

This information partly expresses opinions of our customers and/or experiences of individuals and do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of Greiner Bio-One.

Media owner and publisher: Greiner Bio-One GmbH, Bad Haller Str. 32, 4550 Kremsmünster

Sign-up to our newsletter or request more information here
Register now and you will receive our regular Greiner Bio-One News on current topics to stay up-to-date.

We redirected you to your country page. To go back to the previous page, please click the button.

You are not viewing your country page. To switch to your country, please click the button.