Laboratory hours

Week days
All laboratories are open 0900 hours to 1730 hours daily, Monday to Friday. Most specimen reception areas are accessible to hospital staff and the general public at all times. Specimens may be left at any reception area but, if possible, are best delivered direct to the appropriate laboratory.

Weekends/Bank Holidays
The Clinical Biochemistry, Haematology and Microbiology laboratories offer a clinical emergency service. If this service is required outside the scheduled transport times, the requesting clinician/G.P. should contact the Facilities Management Service Centre, on extension 7676, who will co-ordinate the transport and contact the Hospital switchboard – who will put them in contact with the relevant on-call person.

Urgent specimens
If a result is required urgently, this must be clearly indicated on the relevant request form, together with the degree of urgency, i.e.

  • “Please Phone” : the specimen will be analysed with routine work and results telephoned as soon as available
  • “Urgent” : the specimen will be analysed separately and results telephoned as soon as available

For Urgent Microbiology requests the requesting clinician/G.P. should contact the Facilities Management Service Centre, on extension 7676, who will co-ordinate the transport and contact the Hospital switchboard – who will put them in contact with the relevant on-call person.

On-call/ emergency service
The Haematology, Clinical Biochemistry and Microbiology Departments provide an emergency, out of normal hour’s service.

Phlebotomy services
The Phlebotomy service, managed through the Haematology Department, endeavours to provide a full service. However, the ultimate responsibility for obtaining the specimen remains and rests with the Clinician. (Urgent samples are not taken by the phlebotomists). Samples will not be taken from inadequately identified patients (see Trust protocol on patient identification).

Diagnostic Outpatient Tests
Glucose tolerance tests:
Colchester 01206 742416
Clacton 01255 201508
Harwich 01255 201205
Sweat tests:
Colchester 01206 742416

Outpatient Service
Outpatient times are as stated on the Internal Telephone Directory webpage

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