Changes to phlebotomy (blood testing) services during the COVID-19 response

Due to patient feedback we became aware that there has been a lack of blood testing services operating in Redbridge.
Blood vials

Because of the demand and staff availability at services, there are waits of six weeks or more at some community clinics. However, there is still earlier availability at other locations and work is underway to reduce waiting times across the three boroughs

Most blood tests must be booked in advance. The only exception is the Barts Health service at Forest Medical Centre which is a walk-in service, specifically for Wanstead/Whipps Cross patients

A number of the usual blood testing locations have been closed to reduce patient footfall, support social distancing and optimise resources.

Walk-in services 

Forest Medical Centre (Redbridge patients only)
Old Station Road, Loughton, Essex, IG10 4PE
(no appointment necessary. No children under 10).
Tel: 020 8535 6888
Please note: only patients who would usually access the Wanstead/ Whipps Cross site should use the facilities at Forest Medical Centre or Whipps Cross. Due to different systems, results are not available for patients who would not normally use those services 

The walk-in at Heronwood and Galleon site in Wanstead will be open from 21st September. Redbridge patients who would usually use this site or Whipps Cross Hospital can use any of the other sites across BHR and also the walk-in service at Forest Medical Centre in Loughton.

Urgent Referrals 
NELFT is providing an urgent referral pathway for BHR GPs to refer urgent blood tests. This includes 2-week-wait (2WW) cancer referral, cardiac conditions, diabetes, those who require medication reviews and patients at high risk of infections. Currently these patients are being seen within one week of the referral.

Redbridge Clinics 
BHR CCG have told us that appointments will be available at three additional clinics in Redbridge from 21 September. These clinics may be temporary and appointments can be booked now, online or via telephone:  

  • South Woodford Health Centre,  
  • Hainault Health Centre and  
  • Seven Kings Health Centre.  

Booking in advance
If your GP tells you that you need to have a blood test, you must book an appointment in advance – please do not just turn up. This is to ensure that infection control and social distancing guidance can be followed. 

Children aged under 12 can have blood tests with the children’s outpatients service at BHRUT. Your GP will be able to refer you or you can call paediatrics team at Queen’s Hospital for advice on 01708 435289. 

Housebound patients 
Housebound patients are also supported by NELFT’s domiciliary blood testing service which is operated in line with infection control guidance. Referrals are made by GPs directly to the specialist service.   


Barts Health NHS Trust

If you have a blood test requested by Barts Health NHS Trust, you can use any of these locations, no matter where you live.

GP practices may have their own phlebotomy service and not all of the services listed below can perform blood tests requested by GPs. Please check with your GP.

Prior to your blood test, your clinical team will send you blood test labels or tell you where phlebotomists can print these.

For further information about phlebotomy services at Barts Health, please contact:

This information is also available to download as a patient leaflet

Booking an appointment:

South Woodford Health Centre
114 High Road, South Woodford, E18 2QS
Book online at:
(No children under 12).
Tel: 0300 300 1704 (office hours only) Telephone lines can get very busy and it is recommended that patients book online 

Hainault Health Centre  
Manford Way, Hainault, Essex IG7 4DF
Book online at:
(No children under 12). Tel: 0300 555 1045 (office hours only) Telephone lines can get very busy and it is recommended that patients email to book an appointment 

Seven Kings Health Centre
1 Salisbury Road, Porters Avenue Seven Kings, Essex, IG3 8BG
Book online at:
(No children under 12). Tel: 0300 300 1704 (office hours only) Telephone lines can get very busy and it is 

recommended that patients book online 

When you go for a blood test you should take your paper blood test form to your appointment as this is needed to process your blood test.

Find out more 

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