Haemophilus influenzae – Confirmation and Serotyping

Consistent with O. Reg. 671/92 of the French Language Services Act, laboratory testing information on this page is only available in English because it is scientific or technical in nature and is for use only by qualified health care providers and not by members of the public.

Specimen Collection and Handling

Specimen Requirements

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

Haemophilus influenzae – Confirmation and Serotyping

Pure viable subculture of organism

Appropriate media to support growth of the organism

Haemophilus influenzae – Confirmation and Serotyping

Swab of the pure subculture

Amies transport medium

Submission and Collection Notes


Indicate the following on the Reference Bacteriology Requisition:

  • test Requested
  • culture information 
  • clinical/epidemiology information

If a swab is received the turnaround time will be delayed 24 hours.


Primary cultures are unacceptable as they should be processed in the originating lab. The submitter will be contacted by telephone. A report will be issued to indicate that the test has been rejected.

Timing of Specimen Collection

Specimen should be transferred to the laboratory within 48 hours of collection.

Storage and Transport

Label the specimen 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.

Place specimen in biohazard bag and seal.  Label the specimen with 2 identifiers prior to shipment.

Special Instructions

Requisitions and Kit Ordering

Test Frequency and Turnaround Time (TAT)

Haemophilus influenzae cultures are tested daily. 

Turnaround time is up to 4 days from receipt by PHO laboratory.

Test Methods

All Haemophilus influenzae isolates are identified/confirmed by conventional biochemicals, followed by serotyping (sterile site isolates). Both, serotype and biotype are reported for systemic infection isolates and only biotype is reported for non-systemic infection isolates.


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

Specimens that are positive for Haemophilus influenzae from sterile sites of infection are to be reported to the Medical Officer of Health as per Health Protection and Promotion Act.


LAB-SD-125, Reference Bacteriology and Antimicrobial Susceptibility: New Requisition and Testing Algorithm for Improved Test Utilization

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Updated 7 Oct 2022