URMC Labs - Clinical Laboratory Services

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Why is choosing the right lab so important?
A: Over 75% of the decisions your doctor makes about your health care are based on lab results. Your doctor is depending on information received from your lab to make the best possible choices for you. So it’s important to make sure your lab provides the highest quality results.
Q: Is there a difference between labs?
A: Though every lab strives to provide accurate lab results, not every lab is the same. UR Medicine Labs is part of the University of Rochester Medical Center—the only academic medical center in the area. As a result, we have the largest range of tests. We also have the area’s top specialists in pathology, so your doctor can rely on their expertise if he or she has any questions relating to your lab tests.
Q: Can I go to any lab I want?
A: The choice of what lab you go to is usually up to you. If your doctor wants you to go to a particular lab, you should follow that advice. But if your doctor does not specify one, you can choose whichever lab you prefer.
Q: Where are your labs located?
A: With over 25 locations in and around Rochester, we try to make it easy for you to find a lab that’s nearby–no matter where you live. View an up-to-date listing of lab locations and their hours of operation.
Q: Can you tell me more about the tests that I’m having?
A: Many tests have more than one purpose. Our lab personnel and Customer Service Representatives can tell you the names of your tests, but we can’t tell you why you are having them performed. We do not know your medical history, and the person drawing your blood is not a doctor. If you have questions about a particular test, it’s important for you to speak to your physician.
Q: How soon will my doctor get my lab results?
A: This depends on what tests are ordered. Most routine outpatient tests are reported to your physician within 24 hours. Microbiology and specialty testing may take several days to several weeks.
Q: How can I obtain my lab results?
A: It is best to obtain your lab results directly from your health care provider. That way, your results can be explained by the person who knows your clinical history best.
Q: What if I have questions about my bill?
A: If you have questions about your insurance policy coverage or deductibles that may apply to lab work, please call your insurance carrier. For other questions related to your lab bill, please call the Patient Accounts department at (585) 784-8500 or toll free (800) 544-0877.
Q: Will I have to wait long to have my blood drawn?
A: We help our patients on a first come, first served basis, and we always do our best to have you in and out within 20 minutes. However, our busiest time is from 8-10 am in the morning, so if possible, it is best to come at other times of the day. To help you with scheduling, we have several sites that are open later in the evening or on weekends. We also have two sites that take appointments.
Q: Why do you ask for my personal information more than once?
A: When you have lab work done, it is critical that you receive your own results—not someone else’s. The treatment you receive from your doctor is depending on it. So we do multiple checks to make sure we have your name and other information correct. Most labs process several thousand patient samples each day. By asking for your name and other information several times, we help ensure that you always get the correct lab results. This is an important part of our quality assurance.
Q: Why do you need more than one vial of blood?
A: We continually work to make sure our tests require the least amount of blood possible. Still, different tests often require separate tubes of blood. This depends on the tests your doctor requests. You can rest assured that we will only draw the minimum amount of blood required.
Q: How can I make it hurt less?
A: We all realize that having blood drawn is going to hurt somewhat. The best way to make the process easier is simply to trust your phlebotomist. All of our phlebotomists are highly trained, and they take pride in making the process as pleasant and pain-free as possible. If having your blood drawn makes you nervous, talk to your phlebotomist. This can help us to find a way to make things more comfortable for you.
Q: Should I use the same lab for all of my lab work?
A: While it isn’t necessary for you to use the same lab all of the time, it can be beneficial to you and to those who provide your medical care. When you use UR Medicine Labs consistently, all of your lab results are consolidated into a single place where your doctors can review them at regular intervals, if needed.
Q: How do I collect 24-hour urine samples?
Q: How do I collect stool samples?
Q: How can I learn about pregnancy-related testing?

If you have other questions about lab testing, ask your doctor. Or contact us at (585) 758-0510 or (800) 747-4769.