SIHMDS-AG Information for Users

View the SIHMDS-AG quality policy here


Download our referral form here


View a copy of our genetic testing policy here



All genetic testing requires consent. The laboratory assumes that provision of a clinical sample, and a signed referral form, implies that consent has been obtained by the referring clinician. This also includes consent for DNA storage where appropriate, including storage of DNA from patients where no genetic test is currently available/required, unless the referral form specifically indicates that this consent has not been given.


Sample handling and storage:

All samples should be sent directly to the laboratory. If this is not possible, the majority of samples can be stored in a secure refrigerator at +4 degrees Celsius and sent as soon as possible, to arrive at the laboratory within 24 hours of collection.


Packaging and transport:


NHS number is a requirement when referring samples for NHS patients to us. Please indicate this on the request form. 


All samples should be labelled with the patient's name, date of birth, hospital no. and date of collection. All samples should be accompanied by a FULLY completed request form (our own referral form is available from the laboratory, or to download here). The referring clinician (to whom the report will be sent) and the referral centre should be written in full (not initials). Clinical details and tests required should be written legibly and without abbreviations. All samples should be placed in a sealed specimen bag in such a way as to maintain patient confidentiality and prevent leakage and/or contamination to couriers and porters. Samples sent by post should be packaged in accordance with current Post Office regulations.

Please note: The viability of samples collected in the wrong containers, stored at extreme temperatures, clotted or delayed in transit is impaired, and they are prone to failure. Unlabelled external samples will not be processed.


Additional testing:

There is no time limit for additional testing requests, provided consent has been given and material is available, however these requests should be arranged directly with the laboratory.


Feedback, enquiries or clinical advice:

Please contact the Heads of Sections, or in their absence, the Duty Scientist.


© 2011 Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Trust