US July 4 Shipping Reminder

July 4 clipartThis is a friendly reminder that the US will be celebrating our Independence Day on July 4.  Please avoid shipping on Friday, July 3.  Shipments made on July 3 will not be delivered to Covance until Monday July 6.  If you must ship on July 3 a premium courier will need to be arranged and sponsor approval will be necessary for the additional expense.

Dry Ice: What You Need To Know

1) What is dry ice?dry ice
Dry ice is solid Carbon Dioxide (CO2) with a low temperature of -78° C (-109° F). At atmospheric pressure, solid CO2 sublimates or changes directly to CO2 gas without a liquid phase.

2) How long are samples kept in dry ice? And does the long-term storage affect any sample analysis?
Samples can be kept frozen in dry ice for days, depending on the analytes/biomarker frozen stability. As dry ice has a limited shelf-life, long term storage of specimens can be jeopardized in case of insufficient replenishment of dry ice. For long term storage of specimens we recommend using a standard medical/scientific freezer instead of dry ice, with appropriate freezer’s temperature monitoring. Continue reading

Online Kit Ordering
 is the Best Practice

Aug calendar pictCovance’s web kit ordering tool ( is the quickest and best way for sites to order supplies.  This tool was implemented several years ago but some sites are still sending in requests via email.

Beginning August 1, orders submitted by email will no longer be processed and sites will be directed to the web tool to place their order.

Prior to August 1, orders submitted by email will still be processed but sites will be reminded that this practice is ending August 1.

As a reminder to sites, kits and supplies can be ordered online at  Please utilize this site for all current and future orders.

SPAR: Sample Pending Arrival Report

This report is designed to assist in the management of frozen samples. It reflects the status of samples in our database at the time the report was generated.  There may be some lag time so there may be items appearing on the report that were recently returned to Covance.  Below are a few reminders about the report:

• We do not require that you contact Covance upon receipt of the report.

• If you have samples in your freezer, please return them to Covance.

• This report may contain optional samples that were not collected; no action is necessary in this circumstance.

• The report is issued monthly and specimens will appear on the report up to 3 times depending on the specific circumstances:
– If they were collected 15 or more days prior to report generation
– If they were collected more than 30 days prior to report generation
– If the samples are not received after 62 days they will be canceled and will appear on the report as a last reminder of non-receipt.

• If you know you sent the containers in to Covance and it has been more than 30 days from collection, you may want to review any stored samples and the air waybill information for the shipment.  The Investigator Call Center would be happy to assist in investigating the receipt of the shipment.

The Mysterious Covance Cancellation Report

As an Investigator Site using Covance as your Central Laboratory, it is likely that you have received a Cancellation Report. cancelled5

A Cancellation Report is delivered by auto fax when a test has been cancelled. At one time, Investigator Sites were notified of a test cancellation through a phone call. Now, the only test cancellations sites will receive by phone are those associated with Anatomical Pathology testing. Continue reading

Paula Deen Frito and Corn Salad: Y’All Gotta Try This

Paula Deen recipe picHere’s a yummy, fast salad just in time for Memorial Day. But don’t be fooled by the name salad — it is not low in fat or calories. However, an occasional indulgence from Paula Deen never hurt anyone!

Serves 8-10




2 (15 ounce) cans whole kernel corn, drained

2 cups grated cheddar cheese

1 cup mayonnaise

1 cup green pepper, chopped (can use other colored peppers if desired)

½ cup red onion, chopped

1 (10 1/2 ounce) bag coarsely crushed Fritos chili cheese corn chips

Mix first 5 ingredients and chill. Stir in corn chips just before serving.

Ship Samples with the Same Accession Numbers Together

Do any of you spend 10 minutes figuring out how to get one more plate in your dishwasher or do you juggle six grocery bags, a purse/backpack and a phone just so you don’t have to make one more trip to the car?

We all like to maximize our efforts but when it comes to shipping kits back to Covance we really need Investigator Sites to take the extra time to keep samples with the same accession numbers together.

Anisha, Work Flow Lead, for Lab Pre Analytical Services said, “Sites can consolidate multiple kits in a shipment but they should keep the same accession numbers together.”

In other words, don’t batch by type of sample container– batch by accession number.

“All samples belonging to a specific accession number should be in the same bag,” Anisha said. Continue reading

Covance Award Winner Drives Quality, Service to Sites

anish photoAnisha, Work Flow Lead, began her career with Covance opening samples as they came in from the sites.  She quickly proved herself a natural leader, and in fact, was one of the winners of the prestigious Covance Way Award in 2014.  This internal award recognizes 1 percent of the top performers in each business unit of the company.  After only three years with the company, Anisha was nominated for this award by six people from four different departments.

In addition to overseeing the workflow of the department,  Anisha makes sure all training is up to date and is in charge of all quality metrics.  She also gets to use her people skills by leading all internal and external tours through the department.

“I like the face-to-face interaction I have with our internal and external customers,” she said. Continue reading

Happy Mother’s Day

quinoa recipe imageTo celebrate all those who mother and nurture us, enjoy this recipe. Covance Site Communications tried it out and voted it a “keeper.”

Cheesy Greek-Style Baked Quinoa
2 ½ cups cooked quinoa (prepare quinoa with chicken broth instead of water for more flavor)
1 ¼ cups fat-free feta cheese
½ cup reduced fat shredded mozzarella or cheddar cheese
1 cup marinated artichoke hearts (in oil)
1 cup chopped fresh spinach
1 cup diced cherry tomatoes
½ cup skim milk
1 tsp crushed or minced garlic
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp parsley
1 tsp onion powder
½ tsp (approx.) sea salt and coarse black pepper

Prepare the quinoa as directed. While quinoa cooks, dice the cherry tomatoes and chop the spinach leaves, then set aside.  Next, in a food processor or blender, combine 1 cup feta, skim milk, garlic, lemon juice and parsley, blending until smooth.

When ready, add artichoke hearts, cherry tomatoes and spinach into quinoa, plus 1 tbsp oil from the artichokes, stirring well.  Pour over feta sauce, then season with onion powder and salt and pepper, combining thoroughly.

Transfer mixture to an oven-safe casserole dish, spreading evenly. Top with remaining feta and mozzarella (or cheddar), then bake at 400 F° for 15 minutes until top has melted.  Serve immediately.


New Format, Frequency for InSite

Blog imageWelcome to the new Investigator Blog, InSite.  This replaces our quarterly newsletter with the same name.  This change was made to share relevant and interesting communication with sites more frequently.   The InSite blog will be updated monthly with eLearnings, employee profiles and articles about clinical research and laboratory best practices.

We look forward to communicating with you more often and providing helpful information, practical tips and some fun, lighthearted pieces.  As always, your comments and feedback are welcomed and encouraged.

Please bookmark this link or save it to your favorites so you can check in with us frequently to see what is new.