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Preparing for a Test

Having lab work done has never been easier.
Arriving prepared for your test can help ensure all goes smoothly.

Find a location

As Canada’s largest community lab, we have Patient Services Centres across B.C. Ontario and Saskatchewan ready to serve you.

Heart Monitoring

Need an ECG or Holter monitoring? Many of our locations offer these specialized tests. Find a location near you to book an appointment.

Prepare for a Visit

Being prepared for a test not only ensures a smooth visit, but also accurate results.

When you visit a LifeLabs patient service centre, please bring these three items:

  • Requisition form

A valid and completed requisition form for the tests ordered by your doctor/healthcare provider. To reduce your wait time, complete the personal information on the form in advance. Note: In Ontario, forms issued by hospitals are not accepted at LifeLabs and tests must be completed by the issuing hospital.

  • Valid health card

Bring your valid provincial health card each time you visit the Patient Service Centre.

  • Although most routine tests are covered under your provincial health insurance plan, some tests may not be covered.
  • If you forget your health card or if your card has expired, we may ask you for payment to process your tests.
  • If your test is not covered under your provincial health insurance plan, for your convenience, we accept: cash, cheque, Visa, MasterCard and debit card.
  • Reusable bag

Some tests may require at-home collection. You may feel more comfortable carrying the collection containers in your own reusable bag. As per the Federal Single-use Plastics Prohibition Regulations that came in effect on December 20, 2022, we will no longer provide plastic checkout bags to patients, so please bring your own bag with you for your visit.

A standing order requisition is valid until the expiry date indicated by the ordering doctor/healthcare practitioner up to a maximum of twelve (12) months. 

After the standing order expires, you will need to return to your doctor/healthcare provider for a new standing order requisition if repeated testing is still required.

Proper patient identification is crucial for testing accuracy. That’s why you can expect us to ask for patient information twice during each visit.

Once when you are registering, and once again before your procedure, we will ask you to give us your:

  • health insurance card
  • first and last name
  • date of birth
  • address


Before your test, follow all required steps for the particular laboratory test your physician has ordered. This may include fasting or other preparations. For more details, see Patient Test Instructions.

We know you are busy and we want to help you get back to your day. That’s why appointments may be booked to help reduce your wait time. If you are unable to book an appointment, we do our best to minimize your wait, but the length of your visit will depend on the number of patients in the Patient Service Centre. Typically, wait times are a little longer in the morning as patients tend to fast for tests over night.

After your visit, your sample will be taken to one of our laboratory testing facilities for processing and reporting.

To provide a comfortable and safe environment for our patients and employees, please avoid wearing scented perfumes or creams when visiting our Patient Service Centres. We appreciate your cooperation in providing an allergy free environment.

Medical tests don’t have to be scary! Learn how you and your child can prepare for a positive experience when you visit us for your next lab test. For more details, see Preparing Your Child for a Lab Test.

Patient Test Instructions

Some tests may require fasting or other forms of preparation in advance. Please read the Patient Test Instructions to make sure you are prepared for the test your physician ordered and know what to expect. Where possible, instructions have been provided in different languages.

Patients FAQs