Routine Diagnostic Service (Haematology)

Routine Requests

Internal requests should be made using either the combined paper request form, for Haematology, Clinical Chemistry and Immunology, which should be filled out 'lottery style', or the Trusts electronic system for requesting and reporting, ICE, which can be navigated to from the Trust Intranet home page. For data quality purposes, Laboratory Medicine encourage all users to use ICE. GP requests should be made using the GP combined request form again using 'lottery style' tick boxes.

Click here for further information on completing request forms.

Routine results are avaliable the same day. Coagulation results for anticoagulation control will be available within 4hours of receipt in the laboratory. When abnormal results are detected, every attempt is made to contact the requestor. Where appropriate the Consultant Haematologist or registrar will contact the requestor direct with advice regarding patient care.

Sample Integrity

Poorly venepunctured blood samples can dramatically affect the results of a test. Some of the more common errors are listed below:

Read more: Routine Diagnostic Service (Haematology)

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Emergency Laboratory Services (Haematology)

Urgent Haematology Requests

Normal Laboratory Working Hours

Analyses requested as an emergency test should have the urgent tick box on the request form marked or the ICE request completed as urgent.

Out of Normal Working Hours  

  • Full Blood Count
  • INR and Partial Thromboplastin Time
  • DIC Screen
  • Urgent Sickle Cell screening
  • Malarial screen
  • Crossmatch for Blood Transfusion 
  • Issue of fresh frozen plasma/platelets/cryoprecipitate

Please contact  the shift Biomedical Scientist on bleep 2449 for BHH/Solihull or 8779 for GHH for all urgent Blood or Blood Product requests or for general advice and availability of other investigations. 

Read more: Emergency Laboratory Services (Haematology)

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Haemoglobinopathy Screening

Screening for thalassaemia and variant haemoglobins (such as Sickle haemoglobin) is performed within the Haematology laboratory at Heartlands Hospital for all Trust sites and GP's. Patients may require haemoglobinopathy testing as part of ante-natal screening or pre-operative assessment.

Requests should be made on a Haematology request form and sent with a 4ml EDTA sample for analysis. We are unable to reflex haemoglobinopathy screening on suspected full blood counts results without a request. Ante-natal requests should be accompanied with a Family Origin Questionnaire.

Occasionally samples are referred to Central Middlesex Hospital, London or John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford for confirmation of new or unusual variants or for alpha thalassaemia testing.

For further information or advice please contact the laboratory on extension 40198 or check the Test Database.

haematology, specialist testing

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Requesting additional tests (Haematology)

Add-on Tests

Any addtional test requests should be made to the laboratory within the following time scales:-

Citrate Tube




Citrate samples within 4 hours of venepuncture




EDTA samples within 24 hours (requests for Haemoglobinopathy screening can be made upto 72 hours from venepuncture)

Heartlands/Solihull Hospital - Additional tests may also be performed on previously received specimens if sufficient is available in storage and the sample is within the time scale indicated above.. For Hospital users of the service please use the electronic add on system. External users of the service should contact the relevant department to discuss if an add on test is possible.

Good Hope Hospital -  All requests for add on tests on inpatients should be made using a request form. External users of the service should contact the relevant department to discuss if an add on test is possible.

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Thrombophilia Screening

Indications for Thrombophilia Screening:

All requests for Thrombophilia Screening must be approved by a Haematology Consultant. This approval is based on NICE clinical guiedeline (NG158).  Samples from patients with insufficient clinical details will be stored untested for one month. In this situation please contact a Consultant Haematologist for advice.

Samples for any coagulation tests must be filled to a minimum of 90% of the fill line indicated on the sample tube. Any sample filled below this level will be reported as insufficient and a repeat sample will be required.


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The laboratories at Heartlands Hospital, Good Hope Hospital and Solihull Hospital form part of the services provided by University Hospitals Birmingham and are UKAS (United Kingdom Accreditation Service) accredited to the ISO 15189:2012 standard. For a list of accredited tests and other information please visit the UKAS website using the following link:

  • Heartlands, Good Hope and Solihull Hospital pathology laboratories are a UKAS accredited medical laboratory No.8217
  • United Kingdom Health Security Agency laboratory is a UKAS accredited medical laboratory No.8213

Tests not appearing on the UKAS Schedule of Accreditation currently remain outside of our scope of accreditation. However, these tests have been validated to the same high standard as accredited tests and are performed by the same trained and competent staff.

For further test information, please visit the test database:

Protection of personal information - Laboratory Medicine comply with the Trust Data Protection policy and have procedures in place to allow the Directorate and its employees to comply with the Data Protection act  1998 and associated best practice and guidance.

For further information contact Louise Fallon, Quality Manager, 0121 424 1235