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The ODH Microbiology website serves as a quick reference guide on the scope of microbiological laboratory testing available, criteria for the proper collection and transport of specimens, specimen collection kits provided by ODHL, and contact information for the various specialty areas.

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The ODH Public Health Laboratory (ODHL) assists local public health jurisdictions, clinics, hospitals and other state agencies in the diagnosis of diseases and surveillance activities. The laboratory is staffed by highly qualified and trained microbiologists, who have bachelor, master and Ph.D. degrees. All procedures are regularly evaluated for accuracy, precision, turnaround time, cost effectiveness and applicability to public health. The ODHL participates in appropriate proficiency testing programs as mandated by CLIA ’88.

The role of ODHL can be summarized below:

Disease Diagnosis

  • Assists hospitals, local public health jurisdictions, physicians, and clinics in disease diagnosis
  • Serves as a microbiological reference laboratory for the State of Ohio

Environmental Surveillance

  • Tests animals for presence of rabies virus
  • Tests environmental specimens for agents of bioterrorism

Epidemiological Support

  • Provides microbiological analysis of clinical specimens in support of epidemiological investigations
  • Provides bacteriological food testing in the event of a food-borne outbreak

Assistance is available for submission of isolates or clinical specimens to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for public health related testing not available at ODHL. Please contact ODHL Microbiology Customer Service for more information at (888) ODH-LABS.