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STAT and Critical Samples Testing Policy

Public Health Ontario Laboratories (PHOL) are committed to prioritizing testing to assist health-care providers in making swift patient care decisions in an urgent or emergency circumstance (“STAT”). STAT testing should only be requested when it directly affects patient care in an urgent or emergency medical circumstance.

STAT testing is available for specific test requests:

  •  Malaria
  •  Rapid tests for Influenza outbreaks
  •  Bioterrorism
  •  HIV and Hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) needlestick (source only)
  •  HIV and HBsAg testing/results for women in labour
Consultation with a PHOL Microbiologist will be required in circumstances where a test is not usually processed as a STAT.  Approval for after hours testing may require some or all of the following information:  patient symptoms, travel history, date of onset of symptoms, exposure history, outbreak status and vaccination status.
It is imperative that PHOL be notified when STAT samples are being sent.
During operating hours: 
  • Notify PHOL Customer Service Centre during operating hours of Monday to Friday 7:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m or  Saturdays 8:00 a.m. to 3:45 p.m when sending samples for STAT testing.
  • For the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), contact the Customer Service Centre at 416-235-6556.
  • For outside the GTA, contact the Customer Service Centre toll free at 1-877-604-4567.
Outside of operating hours:
  • For the GTA, contact the PHOL emergency duty officer at 416-605-3113.
  • For outside the GTA, contact your local PHOL and you will be provided with a local emergency number. 
Page last reviewed:  
Page last updated: 08/07/2015 2:33 PM
Uncontrolled print copy. Valid only on day of Print: [date]
Page updated on [date/time] 08/07/2015 2:33 PM
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