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Specimen Collection and Preparation

Specimen Instructions

Instructions by Specimen Type

Find instructions about collecting and preparing specimens based on specimen type.

Light Protection

Light Protection Tests

View a list of tests that require amber-colored tubes.

Category A Substances

Category A Infectious Substances

View the classification of infectious substances and learn which are considered Category A.

MIcrobiology Culture

Microbiology Culture Tests

View a list of tests that require the ā€œCā€ label.

Specimen Transport

Customized Instructions

Customized Shipping Instructions

Generate customized instructions by answering a questionnaire (requires sign-in).

Dangerous Goods

Dangerous Goods Training

Access self-paced online training and certification for safe collection, handling, packaging, and shipment of specimens.


Shipping Guides

View and print comprehensive shipping guides for U.S. and international locations.

Transport Regulations

Transportation Regulations

View transportation rules published by federal and international agencies.



Courier Instructions

View information about how to safely and legally package and ship medical specimens.

CDC Permit PDF

CDC Permit

Print the CDC permit to send with the specimen (international only).


Additional Resources


Supply Catalog

Order specimen handling supplies from the supply catalog.



Read FAQs about preparing specimens for transport.