Cellular Pathology, QE Hospital Birmingham


The majority but not all of Cellular Pathology tests and equipment in use are accredited tests to internationally recognised standards for medical laboratories ISO 15189.  This is important for the Department and for service users as it provides assurance on quality and competence.   The full range and nature of accredited tests is detailed on the United Kingdom Accreditation Service website.  Select this link for the details:  http://www.ukas.com - Schedule of accredited tests for Laboratory 10141 .  The laboratory is currently modernising  H&E, special stains and immunohistochemistry staining platforms to support high quality diagnostic cellular pathology reporting and to ensure full traceability of samples within the laboratory.  Consequently not all IHC analysers, special stains and antibodies have been assessed by UKAS.  Others have been reviewed by UKAS early in 2020 and so again are not currently covered by UKAS Accreditation to ISO15189.   Should the laboratory demonstrate to UKAS that they satisfy ISO 15189 requirements for those new tests and platforms, then the UKAS website is updated to reflect that updated repertoire and further specific test details can be provided upon request.

Minimum Dataset required for Cellular Pathology Requests

In order to process specimens it is essential that request forms are fully completed in a clear and legible format. The use of patient ID stickers is permitted however please ensure you use the full patient sticker NOT the smaller blood tube sticker. All specimens received into Cellular Pathology must meet the agreed laboratory minimum dataset; any specimens not meeting the criteria will be returned to the requesting department.Please ensure that any important information (e.g. clinical history, bleep number etc.) is clearly indicated on the form and ensure that any priority or urgent cases are marked as such.

  • Trust cases can be requested via a theatre book or by completing an internal histopathology / cytopathology request form. 
  • GP and dental practices should complete the external request form which can be found at http://www.uhb.nhs.uk/laboratory-request-forms.htm

Specimen Labelling and Multi-Part Cases

If more than one specimen from the same patient attributed to a case is sent they should be clearly indicated as part 1, 2, 3 etc. with an note on the request form detailing the site of the specimen.

Hazardous Specimens

Specimens arising from patients with known or suspected transmissible diseases (e.g. tuberculosis, viral hepatitis, HIV) must be clearly labelled as such to prevent unnecessary risk to laboratory staff.

Specimen Containers 

When requesting stock a member of staff from the Cellular Pathology department will inform the requestor when they will be ready for collection by the portering staff. Consumables provided by the lab should be transported via the porters so please allow time for preparation and transport.

Transportation of Specimens

Specimens are collected at regular intervals from theatres and all relevant departments via portering services. Urgent and unfixed (dry/not in formalin) specimens should NOT be left until the next routine collection – telephone portering services and arrange for a member of staff to bring the sample(s) to the laboratory without delay.

Urgent Reporting

Occasionally it may be necessary for a requesting clinician to highlight a specimen as clinically urgent. If an urgent report is required it should be clearly identified or indicated on the request form. Urgent requests should be sent to Cellular Pathology via the porters without delay.

To ensure that cases are not delayed within the laboratory please make sure that the request form is correctly completed and all sections are filled in properly. Once received urgent cases will be highlighted by the specimen reception and prioritised appropriately in the departmental workload.

UHB, Department of Cellular Pathology

  • Last updated on .
  • Hits: 1045

General Information

General information about the website and its content

Location of Laboratories

Where the laboratories are located and information about the services offered at each laboratory