What happens to blood after it’s been tested?


I had another blood draw today for my GD test and it made me curious- what happens to the blood after the lab tests it? How is it disposed?

In: 1465

Blood is treated like any other kind of biohazard in a medical setting. There are special waste containers to hold biologically hazardous wastes, and a common method of disposing of such waste is incineration. Traditionally hospitals will have one or more incinerators in their basement where such wastes can be rendered into safe ash, while smaller establishments may just hold the waste for collection by a centralized service that incinerates it on their behalf.

Most labs will usually save the sample for a certain amount of time before disposing of it. That way if your healthcare provider orders more tests, they still have the sample and you don’t need another blood draw.

Some samples are passed on for “research” without patient consent. Read “the immortal life of Henrietta lacks”

This still happens


My SIL worked in the lab of a university hospital. Samples that did not contain bad things like Ebola or HIV were given to other departments for testing or research. She said she once got request from a professor in the Agriculture School who wanted to see if blood could be used as a fertilizer for crops.

Lab worker here for University Hospitals. We keep most samples for 7 days in case doctors want to add on testing. Body fluids we keep for longer. After the 7 days they are disposed of into a special biohazard trash bin with leak resistant bags. House keeping comes around and collects the bags. After that, I’m not sure if it’s burned or the hospital pays for collection. I hope that helps!