Health Assurance Testing Services (HATS)


The ISU VDL Health Assurance Testing Services (HATS) laboratory provides real-time production animal health monitoring for boar studs, swine breeding herd pyramids, and downstream production flows. The HATS lab offers same day testing for PRRSV, PEDV and PDCoV by real-time PCR. All samples submitted to HATS must be from farm sites which are confirmed PRRSV negative.

Benefits of testing performed at the HATS laboratory:

  • Same day results with extended hours: The HATS lab offers real-time PCR testing Monday through Saturday with two submission receipt cut-offs and results each day (see table).
  • Same day retesting: Any samples which yield a positive or suspect result are retested the same day via a rigorous retesting policy.
  • Negative flow laboratory: The HATS lab performs testing on expected negative samples. All samples submitted need to have an expected negative status for PRRSV. Additionally, samples submitted for PEDV and/or PDCV need to be expected negative for the respective agent(s). 
  • Close cooperation with other sections in the ISU VDL: The HATS lab works closely with all ISU VDL sections and efficiently transfers samples if additional testing is requested.

Initial Submission:

Samples submitted to HATS must be from farm sites that are expected negative for PRRSV, PEDV, PDCoV, and TGEV. The HATS box must be checked on the Swine Health Test Request Form. Please contact the lab with any questions prior to initial submission (515-294-1950).

Retest Policy:

Samples that yield a positive PCR result for PRRSV, PEDV, PDCoV, and TGEV will have same-day retests performed. Preliminary positive results will be conveyed to clients via phone. 

PRRSV vaccinated sites are exempt from the HATS retest policy.


A positive result for PRRSV, PEDV, PDCoV, or TGEV disqualifies future testing for the positive farm site until a negative status has been established for 3 months. Submissions from the positive site will be routed to the Molecular lab for testing until the negative status has been reached. Clients will be notified via email with permission to resume submission to HATS once the farm site has maintained the negative status. 

The positive site may be depopulated and repopulated to regain HATS testing. The laboratory must be notified of the repopulated status prior to submitting for HATS testing.


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