Rotavirus – Enteric

Specimen Collection and Handling

Specimen Requirements

Test Requested Required Requisition(s) Specimen Type Minimum Volume Collection Kit



1 gram

Virus – Enteric Kit order#390087

Submission and Collection Notes


Complete the following fields of the General Test Requisition Form if diagnostic testing is required:

  • Symptoms
  • Onset date
  • Outbreak number if applicable

Refer to the Virus-Enteric Kit Instruction Sheet for detailed specimen collection instructions.


If you suspect an outbreak, contact your local public health unit.


Samples received in Virus or Multi-Organism transport media are not suitable for testing rotavirus.

Preparation Prior to Transport

Label the specimen container with the patient’s full name, date of collection and one other unique identifier such as the patient’s date of birth or Health Card Number. Failure to provide this information may result in rejection or testing delay.

Special Instructions

Specimens should be stored at 2-8°C following collection and shipped to PHO laboratory on ice packs as soon as possible after collection.

Requisitions and Kit Ordering

Test Frequency and Turnaround Time (TAT)

Rotavirus testing is performed daily Monday to Friday.

Turnaround time is up to 1 day from receipt by PHO laboratory if tested with the Immunochromatographic Test (ICT) and up to 3 days from receipt by PHO laboratory if tested by electron microscopy.

TAT will vary during the winter months.

STAT and Critical Samples testing is not available.


Results are reported to the ordering physician or health care provider as indicated on the requisition.

Outbreak specimens that are positive for rotavirus are reported to the Medical Officer of health as per Health Protection and Promotion Act.

Test Methods

Specimens from Day Care Outbreaks and children ≥30 days to < 4 years old are tested by a rotavirus rapid test (Immunochromatographic Test-ICT). Specimens that are tested by ICT and are negative or positive will also be tested by EM.

Enteric specimens from persons age < 30 days or 5 years and older are tested by EM only.

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Laboratory Services

Updated 12 April 2019