Find a Lab Location

We know that timely service and convenience is important to you. That’s why we provide outpatient services at over 40 easy-access locations across 13 West Michigan counties. We don’t require an appointment at any of our outpatient locations, just stop in and register at the front desk to have your blood drawn or drop off a specimen.


Common Questions

Be sure you have an order from your healthcare provider.
  • They will tell you when you should come in for your testing. If you are unsure if you have testing that needs to be completed, you may want to call your provider or call the lab location you will be visiting (phone numbers for each location can be found on the map).
 
Decide if you want to schedule or  walk in anytime.
  • Many of our locations offer scheduled appointments through your MyHealth account. (See Schedule a Visit section for more details.)
 
Choose the lab location that is most convenient for you (see location map on this page).
  • Our locations are usually busiest in the morning (8 a.m.–11 a.m.) or in the late afternoon.
 
Follow any instructions given to you by your provider before your lab visit.
  • The most common instruction is to fast before your testing. At Spectrum Health, we recommend nothing to eat or drink except water for eight hours prior to testing. (That includes no smoking, chewing gum, candy, cough drops, etc.)
 
Be sure to bring your current insurance card(s), a photo ID and any lab orders you were given by your doctor.
Here at Spectrum Health Labs we want you to have the best experience possible. Our goal is to make your visit as comfortable, safe, and simple as we can. If you have questions or concerns, please let us know at any time, before, during, or after your visit. Below are some actions you can take that will help improve your visit.
 
The first thing you can do is be sure you have followed the steps in the Before Your Visit section.
  • If you have any questions on how to prepare, please call the lab location you are planning to visit or your provider.
 
Most importantly, make sure you drink plenty of water in the hours before your visit.
  • Being well hydrated helps our Phlebotomists find your veins, reduces the need to poke you a second time, and speeds up the collection process. Drinking water before your visit also ensures you will have the ability to produce a urine sample if your provider requires one.
 
Try to stay relaxed.
  • Stress causes your blood pressure to increase, which causes your blood vessels to constrict, making them harder to find and collect blood from.
 
Dry skin at the blood collection site can cause more pain.
  • Be sure to lotion your hands and lower arms. There is also a numbing cream that can be applied 30-45 minutes before your draw that decreases pain, but you will need to obtain a prescription from your provider and apply the cream 30-45 minutes before your visit.
 
We will ask you if you have any concerns or questions about the collection process.
  • Be sure to tell us if you are prone to fainting.
  • Let us know if you have a ‘favorite’ vein for your blood collection.
 
During the draw, stay relaxed, breathe, and hold still.
  • If you are nervous about the blood draw or are prone to fainting, it's best to look away and focus on something else or talk with the phlebotomist.
  • Stress causes the blood vessels to constrict, making them harder to find.
 
After the draw, we will have you hold consistent pressure on the collection site with gauze.
  • This will help prevent a bruise from forming, speed up the clotting process, and prevent bleeding from the site later in the day.
 
If you are not feeling ready to stand up after the draw, please let us know and we will help you into a comfortable place to sit and wait until you are ready.
 
Your results will be sent electronically to your provider as soon as they are completed.
  • Results will also be sent to your MyHealth account twice a day (6 a.m. and noon). Most testing is completed within 48 hours; however, please be aware some testing does take longer.
 
Here is a good resource if you would like additional information: Labtestsonline.
  1. Log into your MyHealth account
  2. Select Make an Appointment (at the top of the screen)
    Make an Appointment
  3. Select Schedule an Appointment

    Schedule an Appointment
  4. Confirm you are not experiencing any of the listed systems (if you are please call 911 or go to nearest hospital emergency)

    Symptons
  5. Select "Tell us why you're coming in"

    Tell Us
  6. Then Select "Lab Visit"

    Lab
  7. 3 Questions will come up for you to answer. Once they are answered you will be able to select the Continue button at the bottom

    Labs
  8. You will then be asked to pick a lab location that works best for you.
    Lab
  9. Once you have picked a location you will be presented with all of your appointment time options.

    Labs
  10. On the next screen you will need to confirm your information is correct. If it is, select the “This information is correct” button below. If not, please edit the information.
  11. Last question. Fill in the “What is the most important thing you want addressed during this visit?” It could be as simple as “labs” or something more detailed like, “to have my results quickly.” We will do our best to meet your requests.

    Labs
  12. Now you can select the Schedule button at the bottom. See you soon!
The specimen you will be collecting at home will provide essential information. Your physician will use the results to decide the next steps, if any, in your treatment plan. It is important to carefully follow instructions to ensure the sample is not tainted and provides accurate information. Store the container at the temperature described in the collection instructions. Deliver your specimen as soon as possible to your doctor or the laboratory that gave you the container.


What are important steps I should ensure I do while collecting a sample?
  • Always thoroughly wash and dry hands before and after collection.
  • After collection, make sure the lid is secured and fastened evenly, as leaky specimens will be rejected.
  • After collection wipe the container off with a paper towel.
  • Label specimen clearly to include:
    - Patient’s full name
    - Date of birth
    - Time and date of collection
  • Return specimen(s) to your physician office or deliver sample to any outpatient lab during regular hours. Keep container upright at all times. No appointment necessary. Specimen will need to be registered at time of delivery to ensure a quality specimen was collected.


How do I perform a Sputum Collection?
  • Collect your sputum specimen(s) upon awakening, before eating.
  • Do not collect saliva or spit.

Directions:
  1. Rinse your mouth with water.
  2. Inhale and then cough deeply (from the diaphragm) and expel directly into the sterile specimen (white top) container provided by your doctor or lab. (Do not touch the inside of the container or contaminate it in any other way.) Avoid collecting saliva.
  3. Repeat three to four times until at least a tablespoonful is collected.
  4. Make sure container lid is fastened evenly and securely.
  5. Label container with patient’s full name, date of birth, and date and time of collection.
  6. Deliver the sample as soon as possible.


How do I perform a Stool Collection?
  • If you have several vials to fill, you may fill multiple vials from the same bowel movement as long as they don’t have the same colored top. Each colored top container is used for different testing.
  • If collecting multiple specimens for ova and parasite, it is often recommended that a minimum of 3 specimens be collected over the course of 7 to 10 days. Successive specimens submitted on the same day will be rejected.
  • If collecting for Clostridium Difficile (C-diff) your stool must be liquid (watery). Soft or formed stools will be rejected. Contact your health professional if your stools are no longer liquid and they have ordered this test.

Directions:
  1. Collect the specimen in a dry, clean container. A common container is a clean disposable plastic (e.g., margarine) container.
  2. Do not contaminate the stool specimen with urine or scoop the sample from the toilet bowl.
  3. If the stool is liquid, transfer the specimen by pouring it from the clean container into the testing vials. If the stool is solid, use the scoop provided with each vial to transfer the specimen to the testing vials.
  4. Stool culture (colored cap) and ova and parasite (different colored cap) containers include a liquid. Caution: The liquid is poisonous. Do not splash or spill it. Keep out of the reach of children.
  5. Fill the vial until the liquid reaches the line on the label. Do not overfill. Do not refrigerate.
  6. Collect all other tests in the clean (white cap) container. Fill the vial to the line. Do not overfill. Refrigerate the clean vial (white cap) until you are ready to transport to lab.
  7. Make sure container lid is fastened evenly and securely.
  8. Label containers with patient’s full name, date of birth, and date and time of collection. Be sure the caps are secure and place containers in a paper sack.
  9. Deliver the sample as soon as possible.


How do I perform a Kidney Stone Analysis Collection?
Read instructions before beginning collection. Most stones are small enough to pass out of the body on their own. Each urine collection should be filtered until the stone has passed. It is important to filter your urine during your first-morning void, because the stone may have passed to the bladder or urinary tract during the night.

Directions:
  1. Use the filter provided to filter urine.
  2. Check the filter for any particles that may be a stone. The stone can be very small and look like a grain of sand or small piece of gravel. Check the filter carefully.
  3. If a stone is found, place it in a clean, dry container provided.
    a) Do not tape the stone to container as tape will affect testing.
    b) Do not put any liquid in the container.
    c) Do not send the filter.
  4. Write patient name, date of birth, and date and time of collection on the sticker on the container.
  5. Place the container in bag provided.
  6. Keep the stone at room temperature.
  7. Deliver the sample as soon as possible.


How do I perform a 24-Hour Urine Collection?
This test is valid only if the collection includes all urine passed in a 24-hour period. If any of the urine passed during the 24 hours is not put into the collection container, the test will be inaccurate. You have been supplied with a urine collection container. It may or may not contain a white tablet or some liquid. Do not discard contents. This is a preservative necessary for the accuracy of the particular test your doctor has ordered. Do not allow the liquid to come in contact with your skin. If there is an accidental spill onto your skin, immediately wash the involved area thoroughly with water. If irritation persists, call your physician. Collect urine in another clean container first, and then immediately pour the urine into the larger container with the preservative in it.
 
Directions:
  1. Continue your normal diet, medication, and fluid intake regimen during the urine collection period, unless otherwise directed by your doctor.
  2. Start the 24-hour collection period when you arise in the morning. Empty your bladder at that time but do not collect this urine since it was formed before the collection period. Record this time as the time you began the urine collection period.
  3. After the start time, collect all urine that you pass for the next 24 hours. For the final collection, empty your bladder at the same time noted above on the following day. Include this urine in the container since this urine was formed during the collection period. Record the time you completed the urine collection period.
  4. Keep all urine refrigerated during the collection period, except urine uric acid specimens, which must be kept at room temperature. You may store refrigerated specimen containers in a cooler with ice or outdoors if the weather is cold.
  5. Should you have a bowel movement during the 24-hour period, try to pass your urine prior to the bowel movement to avoid loss of urine.
  6. For tests requiring a preservative, mix all urine thoroughly with the preservative.
  7. If the volume of urine is greater than the first container and a preservative has been added, pour half of the collected urine into a second container without preservative or obtain a second container with preservative from the lab. Then continue to collect the additional urine in the second container.
  8. Make sure the lid is fastened evenly and securely.
  9. Label the container with patient’s full name, date of birth, and date and time of collection.
  10. Deliver the sample as soon as possible.


How do I perform a Clean Catch Midstream (CCMS) Urine Collection?
A clean-catch specimen is a way of collecting urine that contains less bacteria from the skin. Please follow these instructions to collect a clean-catch midstream urine specimen:
 
Directions:
Female:
  1. Wash hands with soap and water and dry them.
  2. Open the urine cup. Do not touch the inside of the container.
  3. Sit on the toilet.
  4. Using the opened wipe, clean the genital area (private area) from front to back.
  5. Throw the wipe in the trash
  6. Urinate a few drops into the toilet.
  7. Then, collect the middle part of the urine (stream) into the cup.
  8. Finish urinating into the toilet.
  9. Make sure the lid is fastened evenly and securely.
  10. Wipe off the cup with a paper towel.
  11. Wash your hands.
  12. Label the cup with patient’s full name, date of birth, and date and time of collection.
  13. Deliver the sample as soon as possible.

Male:
  1. Wash hands with soap and water and dry them. - Open the urine cup. Do not touch the inside of the container.
  2. Using the opened wipe, clean the tip of your penis.
  3. Throw the wipe in the trash
  4. Urinate a few drops into the toilet.
  5. Then, collect the middle part of the urine (stream) into the cup.
  6. Finish urinating into the toilet.
  7. Make sure the lid is fastened evenly and securely.
  8. Wipe off the cup with a paper towel.
  9. Wash your hands. Label the cup with patient’s full name, date of birth, and date and time of collection.
  10. Deliver the sample as soon as possible.
 
How do I perform a First Void Urine (“Dirty Urine”) for STI testing (Chlamydia/Gonorrhea/ Trichomonas NAAT) Collection?
Morning collection is preferred. Patient should not have voided for at least one hour prior to collection. This is not the same specimen collection procedure as a clean catch midstream urine. If both types of specimens must be collected, perform this procedure first, and then follow the clean catch procedure. Do not cleanse the genital area prior to specimen collection.
 
Directions
  1. Wash hands thoroughly with soap and water and dry them.
  2. Open the urine cup. Do not touch the inside of the container.
  3. Urinate directly into the container, collecting the first portion of urine.
  4. Fill container 1/3 full (Do not overfill). Finish urinating into the toilet OR if you are also collecting a clean catch midstream, follow clean catch procedure.
    - Make sure the lid is fastened evenly and securely.
    - Wipe off the cup with a paper towel.
    - Wash your hands.
    - Label the cup with patient’s full name, date of birth, and date and time of collection.
    - Deliver the sample as soon as possible.



Busy Times by Hour

The chart below represents a typical day at one of our lab locations. The higher the blue bar, the busier we tend to be during that hour. However, the actual busy time could be higher or lower depending on how many choose to visit us at that specific time.

Spectrum Health Lab Busy Times


A Robust Care Team

Spectrum Health is a trusted lab resource to more than 800 physician offices, hospitals, clinics, home care providers, insurers, and long-term care facilities. Each year, our highly skilled lab professionals perform more than six million diagnostic tests. The clinical team at Spectrum Health is what makes our lab services among the best. Our team includes more than 600 staff members, including board-certified pathologists, PhD scientists, certified clinical laboratory scientists, technologists, and molecular specialists.


Caring for Kids

You only want the best for your kids! We get that. That's why Spectrum Health Labs works extra hard to provide a safe, caring, skilled team of phlebotomists at all of our sites. All our phlebotomists receive additional training at our Outpatient Children’s Lab at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, which focuses on pain reduction and a kid-friendly collection process. This process and extra training means your child will receive the best care no matter which Spectrum Health Lab you choose. If you have a little one that needs a gentler approach, we recommend you visit our Pediatric Lab at 35 Michigan Avenue. Grand Rapids, MI


Colon Cancer Epi proColon Testing

It’s a fact: Colon cancer screening saves lives. Nine out of 10 people survive colon cancer when it's found early. When colorectal cancer is found early, successful treatment is more likely. There are different screening tests for colorectal cancer, and a colonoscopy remains the most accurate screening. If you are unwilling or unable to have a colonoscopy, Epi proColon may be right for you. You should talk with your healthcare provider about recommended screening tests, so you choose the test that is best for you.


Services Offered

Spectrum Health Regional Laboratories perform more than six million diagnostic tests per year and provide a full range of reference testing for hospitals as well as highly specialized laboratory services. Regionally, we serve more than 800 physician offices, hospitals, clinics, home care providers, insurers, nursing homes, and assisted living facilities. Our laboratory outreach services are licensed, certified, and accredited through four national organizations. This means you can count on our labs to provide quality and excellence.

Our services are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. We look forward to being a vital partner with you in caring for the needs of your patients.


Helpful Resources

Here is a good resource if you would like additional information: Labtestsonline.org.


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