Opening Hours For The Walk-In Spirometry Laboratory
EFFECTIVE MARCH 16, 2020 (MONDAY) - NO WALK IN SPIROMETRY UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE DUE TO CURRENT WORLD HEALTH SITUATION.
For more information you can call the walk-in laboratory at 604-875-4324
About the Walk-In Laboratory Service
The Walk-In Spirometry Laboratory is a sub-unit of the Lung Centre (Division of Respiratory Medicine, University of British Columbia). The service aims to provide walk-in pulmonary function testing (physician requisition required). No appointment is necessary; patients are tested on a first-come-first-served basis. As the service is walk-in only, occasionally capacity may be exceeded on any given day. If a patient is not able to be tested on the day they arrive, they will be offered a booked appointment on an alternative day. Services are covered by the Medical Services Plan.
The laboratory is accredited through the Diagnostic Accreditation Progam (DAP) - a division of the BC College of Physicians and Surgeons. Technicians and equipment meet the American Thoracic Society Standards for pulmonary function tests and undergo regular and rigorous quality control checks.
Tests Offered and How to Make a Referral
Basic pulmonary function tests are offered on a walk-in basis with a valid, complete requisition authorized by a physician or authorized healthcare provider. The following tests can be requested:
Pre-bronchodilator spirometry (15 minutes) - see video demo
Pre and post bronchodilator spirometry (30 minutes)
Oximetry studies both at rest and with mobilization for 3 minutes (5 minutes)
*Patients less than 16 years should be referred to BC Children's Hospital for testing*
If your patient prefers a booked appointment - please refer them to one of the other pulmonary function laboratories in the lower mainland (click here for requisition and list of locations).
What to Bring
A NUMBER OF OUR PATIENTS HAVE ALLERGIES - PLEASE BE CONSIDERATE
WE ARE SCENT FREE - NO PERFUME OR HEAVILY SCENTED BODY PRODUCTS - NO PETS
It is essential that you bring the following items for your visit:
Your BC Driver's License or Health Care Card.
An interpreter if necessary (while some staff do speak a second language, an interpretation service is not provided here).
Your complete, signed requisition form given to you by your referring healthcare provider (please note, tests cannot be performed if the requisition is incomplete or un-signed).
No appointment is required but patients are advised to bring their referral forms and Health Care Card when they come for testing.
Check you have complied with the patient preparation instructions
The following optional items may make your visit more enjoyable:
Water bottle and/or snacks (check out our FAQ page for a full list of vendors in this building)
Reading material (magazines available in the waiting area)
What to Expect
When you arrive on the 7th floor of the Gordon and Leslie Diamond Health Care Centre, turn to face the mountains and follow the signs towards the 'Walk-In Spirometry Laboratory' (Station 5).
Please arrive at least 30 minutes before closing to ensure your tests can be completed.
The walk-in laboratory has a self check-in station.When you arrive, follow these three steps:
1. Take a number
2. Put your form in the tray
3. Take a seat (there is no need to check-in at reception)
After a short while a technician will come out and give you a pre-test questionnaire to complete (click here to view a copy). This is to ensure it is safe for you to perform the test and also to check you have complied with the test preparations (required for accurate results).
If you have been unable to comply with the test preparations or if there is concern regarding your safety - you may be asked to return on an alternate day or your test may be deferred permanently and your referring physician contacted.
You may see other patients (who have arrived after you) being tested before you - these patients are not coming to the walk-in laboratory. We have several patient groups, often arriving at the same time, who have booked appointments to see a Respirologist. All walk-in patients will be tested in order of arrival.
When it is your turn to be tested, the technician will call your number. Depending on which tests your doctor has ordered, you may do the first part of your test, then have to wait a short time before doing the second part of your test - if this is the case, the technician will explain the procedure to you fully.
Please note that, as this is a walk-in service, occasionally capacity may be exceeded on any given day and we may not be able to accommodate you. If you are not able to be tested on the day you arrive, you will be offered a booked appointment on an alternative day.
How Long Will I Have to Wait?
Tuesday mornings are the busiest time in the walk-in laboratory. Aside from that the number of patients arriving at any given time is highly variable so we are unable to recommend a 'best time' for you to come. If the capacity for any given day is exceeded - we may not be able to test you on the day you arrive - in these instances you will be offered a booked appointment on a separate day. If you need to get a test completed on a specific day, we recommend that you come in the morning or early afternoon to ensure you can be accommodated.
Here is a list of each test and approximately how long it takes to perform:
Pre-bronchodilator spirometry (15 minutes)
Pre and post bronchodilator spirometry (30 minutes)
Oximetry resting (5 minutes)
Oximetry walking (5 minutes)
If your doctor has requested multiple tests, you will need to add together the test-times to get an indication of how long your testing will take.
The average wait time on any given day is approximately 1 hour - please add this to your test time to give you an indication of how long your visit will be (please note - this is an approximation only, on busy days the wait may be longer).
If you arrive for your test but are unable to wait - you can leave your requisition (and completed pre-test questionnaire) with the receptionist and request to be called with a booked appointment time. Booked appointments are reserved for patients who have come to the clinic in-person (no telephone requests). If you prefer a booked appointment - please ask your referring physician to make an appointment at an alternative laboratory in the lower mainland (click here for referral form and list of alternate locations).
What Happens to My Test Results?
Test results are interpreted by a Respirologist at The Lung Centre and the interpreted results will be faxed to your ordering physician within 7 business days of testing. If you need your results more urgently, please let the technician know. A preliminary report (un-interpreted report) can be faxed to your referring physician on the same day as your test. We are unable to give patients a copy of their results unless this has been specifically requested by your healthcare provider. We are unable to e-mail results at this time as confidentiality cannot be assured.
We look forward to welcoming you!