Public Health Laboratories

The Public Health Laboratories are responsible for protecting the public's health in NH through responsive, unbiased, quality laboratory testing.

The mission of the Public Health Laboratories (PHL) is to protect the public's health in NH through responsive, unbiased, quality laboratory testing; to actively participate in national and international surveillance networks; and to improve the quality of health and laboratory services in both the public and private sector.

PHL fulfills its mission through these five core functions:

Laboratory Response for Critical Incidents

  • Disease outbreaks
  • Newly emergent diseases
  • Product contamination and/or tampering
  • Emergency laboratory response for chemical, microbiological, and radiological incidents
  • Investigations of environmental exposures to known and emergent chemical contaminants
  • Terrorism response

Laboratory Analysis for Food Safety Assurance

  • Microbiological testing of dairy products, shellfish and growing waters, and other food products
  • Food testing required for Homestead Licensing
  • Paralytic shellfish poison (Red Tide) testing
  • Testing for lead and other metals in maple syrup, fish and other food products
  • Testing for mercury in fish

Laboratory Services for Infectious Disease Control

  • COVID-19, Influenza and other respiratory disease testing 
  • HIV, Viral Hepatitis and Sexually Transmitted Disease testing
  • Vaccine Preventable Disease testing
  • Arboviral disease testing and laboratory surveillance 
  • Rabies testing
  • Bacterial and Mycobacterial infection including Tuberculosis 
  • Healthcare-associated infections (HAI) and Antibiotic Susceptibility Testing (AST)
  • Foodborne bacterial disease and norovirus testing 

Laboratory Response for Water Quality Testing and Emergency Response

  • State’s Principal Laboratory for drinking water testing
  • Well water testing for homeowners
  • Water quality testing for beaches, lakes, rivers, and shellfish growing areas
  • Radiological environmental monitoring and emergency response
  • Pesticide and herbicide testing supporting the Department of Agriculture, Markets & Food, Division of Pesticide Control

Quality Assurance Leadership

  • Ensure quality laboratory testing by adhering to TNI, CLIA, ISO, FDA, FSAP, LRN regulations
  • Sustain continuous quality improvement on lab operations and work environment
  • Promote safety practices for laboratory staff
  • Provide training, internships, and technology transfer for laboratorians
  • Present laboratory tours, demonstrations, science fairs and lectures

For customer comments or concerns, or for more laboratory information please email the Public Health Laboratory: