Order of Draw for Blood Collection

Alpha Laboratories will supply color coded sterile evacuated plastic (vacutainer) tubes for blood collection to referring clinicians who perform phlebotomy in their office. To order vacutainer supplies please see Laboratory Supplies

To determine the correct tube for each test, please refer to the alphabetical test listing in the Laboratory Test Requirements Manual

To confirm the order of vacutainer draw for blood collection please see Specimen Requirement Chart - Order of Draw Chart

All specimen containers must be clearly labeled with two unique patient identifiers: patient’s full name and one other identifier, (such as Date of Birth, Health Card Number or patient chart number), and date of collection.

Please also provide time of collection for time sensitive tests, and specimens requiring serial sampling (e.g. GTT)

Please note the following when using vacutainer tubes

  • Select the appropriate type, and number of tubes for the required tests.
  • Check expiry date of tubes.
  • Use safety engineered needles for blood collection.
  • If blood culture is required it should be the first collection in the order of blood draw.
  • Collect blood into tubes in the correct order of draw to avoid erroneous or misleading test results.
  • Allow blood tubes to fill completely to avoid erroneous results
  • Correctly position the patient’s arm and collection tube.
  • Avoid excessive thumb pressure on end of tube.
  • Avoid thumb or finger pressure around venipuncture site during the phlebotomy.
  • Prolonged tourniquet application may cause:  i) false test values due to increases in serum constituents and ii) hemolysis of the specimen, which may interfere with some test procedures, result in increases in test values.
  • For tests containing an anticoagulant gently invert the tube several times immediately after blood collection.
  • Label specimens at the time and point of collection.



Register Today