College of American Pathologists

  QT3 - Laboratory Specimen




Updated October 12, 2005

Laboratory Specimen Acceptability QT3
A substantial amount of rework, diagnostic and therapeutic delay, and patient inconvenience can result from specimen rejection. Patient redraws may be due to issues including unlabeled, mislabeled, and incompletely labeled specimens; clotted and/or hemolyzed specimens; and insufficient specimen quantity. By continuously monitoring specimen acceptability, collection, and transport, problems can be promptly identified and corrected, leading to improved patient care. Participation in this monitor can help satisfy the CAP’s checklist question, “Are preanalytic variables monitored?”

Monitor Objective
Identify and characterize unacceptable blood specimens that are submitted to the chemistry and hematology sections of the clinical laboratory for testing.

Data Collection
This monitor includes all blood specimens submitted for testing to the chemistry and hematology departments of the clinical laboratory. Weekly tallies on the total number of specimens received, the number of rejected specimens, and the primary reason each specimen is rejected will be recorded.

Performance Indicators

  • Specimen Rejection Rate (%)
  • Breakdown of Rejection Reasons (%)

Input forms for quarterly data will be sent to participants approximately three weeks prior to the quarter.


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