The McFarland Clinic Laboratory performs a wide variety of diagnostic tests on blood, urine, and other body fluids. Under the direction of a board-certified pathologist, registered medical technologists and technicians use both automated and manual procedures.
Our laboratory's rigid quality assurance program ensures the production of reliable results that can aid physicians in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of illness and in assessing patients' health.
Timely and quality laboratory testing by competent, caring individuals is an important component of the healthcare experience at McFarland Clinic. Laboratory tests can assist the physician in the diagnosis, treatment, and ongoing evaluation of a variety of medical conditions. We strive to provide these services as accurately and as cost-effectively as possible for the benefit of our patients and their physicians.
Patients need to have a laboratory test order from their physician or healthcare provider before lab tests can be drawn and completed at McFarland Clinic.
Locations & Hours
1215 Duff Ave
Ames, IA 50010
1018 Duff Ave
Ames, IA 50010
3815 Stange Road
Ames, IA 50010
3500 University Boulevard
Ames, IA 50010
1111 Duff Ave
Ames, IA 50010
The McFarland Clinic Laboratory performs over a half-million diagnostic tests every year. More than 93 percent of all tests ordered by our physicians can be performed on-site at a McFarland Clinic location. In addition, we partner with a number of other laboratories (reference laboratories) in case a test is ordered that we cannot perform in our facility.
Common tests conducted include the following categories:
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you explain what these tests are for?
Our laboratory comprises talented and competent receptionists, phlebotomists and technical staff. But we are not physicians. The reason for ordering a test is best explained by your provider.
Do I need an appointment?
You will have a shorter wait if you make an appointment because the paperwork will be done ahead of time. Walk-ins will be worked in around the scheduled appointments.
Do I have to be fasting before I come to the lab?
Certain tests give the provider a clearer picture of your condition if the specimens are collected after you have been fasting for 10 – 12 hours. If you call us for this information and can tell us the name of the test(s) which has been ordered, we can tell you if the results are best on a fasting specimen. Your physician will instruct you about this before you come to the lab. There may be circumstances dictating that a normally fasting test be performed on a non-fasting specimen. Be sure to ask your provider if you have any doubt.
Should I tell the phlebotomist I might get light headed?
Yes. Your phlebotomist will draw your blood in a location that allows easy body repositioning in the event you begin to get light headed. We want to provide the safest environment possible
Will this hurt?
There may be some slight discomfort. It helps if you hold still and follow the instructions of your phlebotomist. You will be able to resume normal activity after your venipuncture.
Will I get a bruise?
Despite our best efforts, you may get a bruise. If you apply constant pressure to the draw site for up to five minutes it will help to limit possibly bruising. The skin will stop bleeding before the vein does. Although it may appear to be done bleeding it may in fact not be done. Our policy is to apply a bandage every time; we do this to help prevent bruising.
Can you just do a finger-stick to get the blood sample rather than poke me with a needle?
Certain laboratory tests can be run on blood collected from a finger stick if the collection procedure is performed skillfully and the resulting specimen is adequate in volume and is not otherwise compromised during the collection procedure. However, in most cases a properly performed venipuncture (collection of a blood specimen by means of a needle inserted into a vein) will provide a better specimen, increasing the chance of accurate test results. Patients usually report that a venipuncture procedure is quicker and less painful than a finger stick.
Am I supposed to go back to my doctor after I leave the lab?
Your provider will give you instructions as to what to do after we have collected your specimen. It’s always best to ask your provider about this before coming to the lab so that there will be no misunderstanding.
Can you tell me the results of my tests?
Results will be interpreted by your physician/provider. He/she is in the best position to explain your test results.
Will my doctor call me with the results? When?
This may vary by provider. Please ask your provider if they will contact you with the results, and when you can expect to be contacted. Contact your provider's office if you have not received your results or if you have any questions.
When will my lab results be complete? When will I be notified of the results?
A healthcare provider prioritizes his/her work according to patient needs. If you are ill, you may receive your results within the same hour. If your tests are for a physical or other non-emergent situation, it may be a few days before you hear back from the office.
Can you give me a copy of my lab results?
Your healthcare provider will provide lab results to you and can interpret the results.
How should I dispose of my insulin needles?
McFarland Clinic does not accept home medical waste for disposal. Call your local waste disposal facility or your garbage hauler to learn the local policy.
In Marshalltown, you may utilize a thick detergent bottle with a screw top cap that can be tightly closed or a needle disposal container purchased form a pharmacy. Avoid containers made of glass or aluminum. Dispose your sharps directly into this puncture proof container. Label the container “HOME SHARPS”. When it is full, notify your garbage hauler that the container will be set alongside your regular garbage for the next pickup. The local waste facility accepts delivery directly to the landfill office. There is no charge for this.
Who should I contact about billing and insurance questions?
Please contact Business Services with your questions.
LabCorp is a reference laboratory for McFarland Clinic where testing may be done if McFarland lacks the capability to perform a particular test.
Mayo Medical Laboratories is a reference laboratory for McFarland Clinic where testing may be done if McFarland lacks the capability to perform a particular test.
Quest Diagnostics is a reference laboratory for McFarland Clinic where testing may be done if McFarland lacks the capability to perform a particular test.
University Hygienic Laboratory is Iowa's public health laboratory and a reference laboratory for McFarland Clinic where testing may be done if McFarland lacks the capability to perform a particular test.
COLA is a laboratory accreditation organization. All McFarland laboratories are COLA accredited.
CDC.gov is your online source for credible health information and is the official website of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The American Society for Clinical Laboratory Science is a professional organization whose website has information for and about professionals performing laboratory tests.
The College of American Pathologists' website contains information about the role of pathology and laboratory medicine in healthcare.
The American Society for Clinical Pathology's website contains information about certification of laboratory testing personnel.
Mary Greeley Medical Center is a a 220-bed regional referral center in Ames, Iowa where many McFarland Clinic patients in the area receive care.