NHS Lothian Laboratory Medicine

NHS Lothian Laboratories COVID-19 Update



Last updated: 23/04/2020

 RHSC- small combined Biochemistry and Haema​tology Lab shut down from 27/02/2020 - transferred work to RIE

 Service continue as normal 
With the exception of:-
  • Faecal calprotectin -routine requests discontinued for safety and operational reasons. Requests made by gastroenterology and primary care will be processed for patients that are not suspected or confirmed to have covid19 in whom the calprotectin result will affect immediate patient management.

  • Pleural fluid biochemistry analysis (including pleural fluid pH, LDH, glucose and protein) is no longer being provided in the laboratory for covid19 positive patients due to a possible infection risk to lab staff.  Pleural fluid pH and glucose measurements for covid19 positive patients should be carried out on a gas analyser within a covid19 area in the main hospital.    For covid19 negative patients pleural fluid samples will continue to be processed in the main laboratory.  For any patients with suspected covid19 pleural fluid samples will be stored by the lab and only processed if the Covid19 PCR results are negative.
Service continue as normal

Service continue as normal
Blood Transfusion

Service continue as normal
Histopathology Services

Service continue as normal
Microbiology (Bacteriology)
Services continue as normal

Helicobacter pylori biopsy testing at Colindale has now been reinstated.

Molecular Pathology/HMDS
Service continue as normal
Haemophilia Genetics
Service continue as normal
Cytogenetics and Molecular Genetics, WGH
Service continue as normal
Virology Serology

Services continue as normal for venous bloods

The exception is DBS testing for BBV which is stalled while new team is trained.

No DBS samples will be processed until this team is trained

Virology Molecular Diagnostics

Virology  Molecular Diagnostics

All tests are being performed as normal



SARS CoV-2 PCR is performed on all respiratory samples. To see lab performed measures and number of tests , these are available on COVID dashboard available via tableau via link to Turnaround Times. (internal users)

The Full respiratory viral PCR testing is performed in few areas, ICU, Transplant, haematology and paediatrics and as a add on tests at clinical request on other inpatients

Users are asked to contact virologyadvice@nhslothian.scot.nhs.uk

All other tests are being performed but if the numbers are very low the turnaround times are longer in some cases.

Of note

Quantitative CMV, BKV EBV is being done twice per week on Tuesday and Friday

Users of this service are asked to get samples sent on Monday and Thursday.

This page will be updated as and when the service changes.

Thank you to Napier University for protecting the NHS
Instructions for transporting COVID-19 samples to the Laboratory and instructions for the testing of these samples
SERL-SMRL Study Day Wednesday 6th May 2020
Blood Science is now accreditated under a single UKAS number 8699
Biotin: Potential for interference in Immunoassay tests
The RHSC Metabolic Service has moved to the WGH
The RIE Microbiology Department and Molecular Diagnostics have been accredited to ISO15189