Skip all navigation Skip to page navigation

DHHS Home | Assistance | Divisions | About DHHS | DHHS Contacts

NC Department of Health and Human Services
State Laboratory of Public Health
N.C. Public Health Home


Phone: (919) 733-7367

Importance of the Microbiology Unit

  • Provides clinical and reference microbiological testing for public and private laboratories, as well as for associated partners.
  • Provides culture and identification of microbial organisms that cause outbreaks of foodborne and other diarrheal diseases. Affected groups include daycare centers, church groups, State Fair goers and other citizens across the state.
  • Performs testing to identify organisms causing diseases such as whooping cough (pertussis), legionellosis, gonorrhea, meningitis, and other communicable diseases, as well as difficult to identify Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria.
  • Performs serotyping of Salmonella, Shigella, Shiga Toxin producing E. coli, Neisseria meningitides, Haemophilus influenza and Vibrio cholera.
  • Conducts testing to prevent and/or control the spread of tuberculosis with attention focused on detection of multi-drug resistant strains of Mycobacterium tuberculosis.

Overview of the Microbiology Unit

Testing Areas Description 2013 Totals
Special Bacteriology Identification of several Vaccine-Preventable -Disease organisms such as Bordetella pertussis (whooping cough) and Legionella. 1,968
Bacteriology-Enterics Examination of fecal specimens for the presence of enteric Pathogens including Salmonella, Shigella, Campylobacter, Yersinia and Escherichia coli (E.coli); instrumental in State Fair and other outbreaks 3,321
Atypical Bacteriology Identification of unusual or difficult to identify Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacilli and confirmation and serotyping of Neisseria, Haemophilus influenza and Vibrio. 1,615
Parasitology Examination of specimens for the presence of human parasites; supports Refugee Program. 1,075
Mycology Isolation and identification of medically important fungi from body tissues and fluids. 391
Mycobacteriology Isolation and identification of mycobacteria, including Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex and non-tuberculous mycobacteria (NTM). 5,092

SLPH Microbiology Information