COVID-19 / Coronavirus Outbreak: How to take blood cultures

Coronavirus / COVID-19 Procedures
JoVE Journal
Coronavirus / COVID-19 Procedures

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Wunderlich, R., Wiesinger, L., Nikomanis, P. S., Häberle, H., Münch, A. COVID-19 / Coronavirus Outbreak: How to take blood cultures. J. Vis. Exp. (159), e6434, (2020).


In pandemic times, medical staff is becoming a key resource in fighting the infection. To achieve the best medical care, relevant techniques and procedures have to be taught to medical staff while reducing the risk of infection. Blood cultures play a key role in an effective anti-infective therapy regime. As COVID-19 patients develop bacterial superinfections in the damaged pulmonary tissue, using the correct technique to obtain blood culture samples and following anti-infective therapy are important. This video shows the required materials and correct way to obtain blood cultures. 


  1. Prepare the needed materials: Blood culture sets consisting of aerobic, anaerobic, and fungus bottles (2-3 sets); 20mL syringes; sterile needles; and disinfection spray.
  2. Fill the syringes (one for each set) with 24 mL of blood, preferably under sterile conditions.
  3. Uncover the bottle tops and disinfect them with alcohol. Wait until the bottle is dry before beginning the injection.
  4. Inject 8 mL of blood into each bottle. To reduce contamination, do so in the following order: fungus, anaerobic, then aerobic bottle. No air should be injected into the bottles. Use the same needle for one set. Mix the bottles after injection.
  5. Repeat the injection for each set of culture bottles.
  6. Label the bottles, one label for each bottle.
  7. Transport each set of bottles in a transport bag. For COVID-19 patients, mark the transport bags as infective and send them to the microbiology laboratory.


No conflicts of interest declared.