Dedicated to protecting the health and safety
of Nebraskans through diagnostic laboratory
science, technology, and education.
Testing Results
IMPORTANT! Sites requesting testing must have approval from the appropriate state or local health department before submitting specimens. Approval must be sent to NPHL by email at or by calling (402) 559-9444.

A Special Microbiology Form must accompany the specimens. Some tests require additional forms and patient history. This will be listed below when applicable. When requested, testing will not be performed without all required information.

Please call NPHL Client Services at (402) 559-2440 or toll free at (866) 290-1406 for further clarification.


  Test: Influenza Virus RNA Detection 
  Synonym: H1N1v/Pandemic Influenza Confirmation, Influenza 2009 Confirmation, Flu PCR or RT-PCR 
  Method: Qualitative nucleic acid amplified real time RT-PCR assay 
  Availability: Varies according to testing volume, refer to laboratory for testing interval 
  Specimen: Nasopharyngeal wash, nasopharyngeal swab, or BAL (contact the laboratory for guidance if other specimen sources are being considered) 
  Collection Device: Universal viral transport media (1 - 2 mL), Starswab viral transport tube or sterile tube (for BAL) 
  Volume: Collect 2 - 3 mL from nasopharyngeal wash (using normal saline) or 2 - 3 mL BAL 
  Storage/Transport: Store refrigerated and transport within 72 hours 
  Unacceptable: Slides, smears; unacceptable sources; samples collected in non-viral transport media or using a bacterial culture swab; dry swabs; wood shaft or calcium alginate swabs; samples collected in EIA or ProbeTec transport media 
  Specimen Stability: Refrigerated, 72 hours; freeze if over 72 hours 
  Reference Interval: Negative for Influenza Type A virus, Influenza A subtype H1 virus (seasonal), Influenza A subtype H3 virus (seasonal), Influenza B virus, and Influenza 2009 A (H1N1). 
  Reportable Disease: A positive Influenza A virus or Influenza B virus result is reportable 
  Comments: This test is recommended for the management of severely ill or hospitalized patients. The test subtypes seasonal influenza virus H3 and and H1 as well as the pandemic 2009 A(H1N1) strain. Subtyping information may also be helpful in predicting antiviral susceptibility. 
  Revised: 10/3/2013 


If you have questions about proper specimen collection, please call NPHL Client Services at (402) 559-2440 or toll free at (866) 290-1406.