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Criteria for Unacceptable Specimen

Specimens submitted will be rejected if the following conditions are unacceptable:



Clotted specimen

Contaminated specimen

Insufficient specimen

Mislabelling of specimen (wrong patient identification)

Unlabelled specimen

Wrong dilution

Specimen container

Specimen leakage and spillage

Wrong specimen container used

Patient information

Insufficient information submitted

Incorrect information submitted

Mislabelling of form (information on specimens labels and form differ)

Transport condition

Delayed specimen

Improper specimen condition (temperature, frozen, in ice)

Improper Transport condition (eg. Blood gas specimen send via the pneumatic system)

For patient safety, major labelling error (e.g. no label, patient identifiers on specimen container do not tally with request form or test ordered) will be rejected and a new specimen should be submitted for testing.


Hard to obtain / irreplaceable specimens are subjected to approval on a case-to-case basis. The responsible physician in charge must obtain a memo or email from his / her Division Chairman or delegate to correct the labelling error. Irreplaceable specimens are those that are either non-replaceable (e.g. histopathology specimens) or difficult to obtain (e.g. cerebrospinal fluid samples).

The reason of rejection will be documented in the Laboratory information system and the rejected specimen will not be returned.