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Patient Education Resources

General information

Sputum Collection Instructions for Patients

The doctor has asked that you submit sputum specimens.  It’s important to collect the samples for three mornings in a row,  for example, on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, or on Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

These instructions will help you collect the specimens in the right way.  

  1. Collect the specimen before breakfast.  The best time is as soon as you get up.
  2. Blow your nose first, to clear the nasal passages of any mucus.
  3. Rinse your mouth with water.  Do not brush your teeth or drink any liquids.
  4. Collect the specimen by coughing deeply to bring up the mucus and spit it into the plastic container that has been provided for you.  Please write the date and time on the container, and on the paper lab slip.
  5. After you’ve collected the specimen, please make sure to close the lid tightly.
  6. Please put the specimen container in the plastic lab bag, and put it in the refrigerator. Do not put the specimens in the freezer.
  7. Repeat the same procedure on each of the next two days.  Don’t forget to refrigerate the container.
  8. On the morning of your last specimen collection, please drop off the containers to the place told to you by your doctor.

Home Isolation Instructions for Patients

Patients required to be on home isolation should have the concept and it’s purpose explained to them, and be provided with home isolation instructions, available in English, Spanish and Tagalog.