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To protect the patient from a central line bloodstream infection we discourage the use of central lines for blood draws. Labs can only be drawn from a central line if there is a specific order to do so.
We have a saying to help you remember the appropriate order to draw lab tubes: “First, Bring Your Good Veins”
1st – Blood Cultures
Bring – Light Blue
Your – Yellow
Good – Green
Vein – Violet
Lastly Pink or Grey
Blood cultures are collected in blood culture bottles. For adults it is one blue and one purple per draw. Pediatrics use one yellow blood culture bottle per draw. Turn the bottle over prior to obtaining a sample to look at the sensor. The sensor on the bottom of the bottle should be a blue-green color. If it is yellow then the bottle is contaminated and it should be discarded.
Remove the metal tab from the top of the bottle. Clean the top of the bottle using one 70 percent alcohol swab and allow to air dry. Blood cultures can only be drawn from a central line if the blood culture order specifically states to do so. The needleless adaptor must also be changed if drawing from a central line.
Clean the site with a Florida Hospital approved cleanser per the policy and allow to air dry. There is NO waste when drawing a blood culture. Fill the blue bottle first with 8 to 10ml followed by the purple bottle with 8-10ml.
Once labs, sputum, urine and stool samples are collected they are sent to the lab for processing. Label the specimen appropriately with a barcode-scanning program. Scan the patient’s armband and print the labels when the collecting specimens at the bedside. During computer training you will learn how to complete this process and have an opportunity to see the equipment firsthand.
The lab has provided a few helpful suggestions while labeling to assist with faster processing:
First, put the label on straight, below the hemoguard cap
Be sure the name appears toward the top of the tube
You should have a clear window to see into the tube
Finally, fill tube to the appropriate fill line
And that is how we properly collect and prepare samples for the lab. Remember that proper labeling doesn’t have to stop at your lab samples. It can also keep your lunch from wandering off too.
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