COVID-19 Testing Information (PHL)

Submitting Samples to the Public Health Laboratory (PHL)

  • Refer the most current Health Alert Network (HAN)
  • Complete DHEC lab requisition form DHEC 1335 and ensure the following mandatory fields are completed:
    • Patient Name
    • Patient ID Number
    • Date of Birth
    • Sex
    • Sender Address
    • Date and Time of Collection
    • Indicate the Specimen Type/Source
    • Please write in “COVID-19 under the TEST REQUESTED section
    • If you are a new sender, please provide your contact information and a fax number
  • For additional guidance please email COVID_PHL@dhec.sc.gov or call 803-896-0819.

Sample Results

  • Healthcare providers submitting specimens for testing at the DHEC Public Health Laboratory (PHL) must be enrolled in OpenELIS.  
  • Reports are available within 24-48 hours after the sample is received by the PHL.
  • If your facility/practice is not enrolled in OpenELIS, please fill out authorized user and confidentiality agreement and send via email to openelis_admin@dhec.sc.gov to get a customer ID and access to OpenELIS.
  • Please be aware that all laboratory results are considered confidential information and reports will only be released to authorized persons.

Transporting Samples to the PHL Laboratory

Samples should be transported directly to the Public Health Laboratory (PHL) or to a DHEC Regional Health Department for forwarding to the PHL.  Locate a regional site.

The following methods can be used to transport specimens:

  1. Shipping using a commercial carrier (like FedEx, UPS, etc.) using a UN certified shipper following DOT packaging regulations.  Please refer to the PHL Services Guide for additional information.
  2. Shipping using a private courier maintained by your institution using a package configuration listed below.
    • UN certified packaging; or
    • PHL approved packaging; or
    • A leak proof sample container, placed in a secondary container (preferably a biohazard marked sample transport bag) with absorbent material, placed and secured in a ridge outer container that is securely closed. This can come in many forms.

Requesting Shipping Supplies

Limited Shipping supplies are available to DHEC program areas and sentinel hospitals. Please submit requests to PHL-Supply@dhec.sc.gov

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Public Health Laboratory