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HealthLabs Review: Are their tests a good option for you?

HealthLabs lets you order health tests to take in a professional lab and then see results at home — no doctor visits necessary

Medically reviewed by: Dr. Nathan LeDeaux, MD
Last Updated: Dec 6, 2021
HealthLabs Review

Diagnostic tests and exams are one of the pillars of modern medicine. They give us hard data about our health and our reactions to treatments or medication. But finding quick, confidential, and affordable options for lab tests can be a challenge for many patients.

HealthLabs is a web-based company that allows you to order hundreds of different tests directly from your home. Using HealthLabs, you can order and pay for these tests without visiting the doctor’s office.

We thoroughly evaluated HealthLabs and tried their services. In this review, we’ll share all of the details with you to help you decide whether they’re the solution to your testing needs.

Editor's Summary

Overall Rating 8.1 / 10

HealthLabs provides enough test types to cover most patients’ potential needs, and the fact that they take HSA and FSA payments sets them apart from much of their competition. Visiting a lab for sample collection means you don’t have to worry about messing up a blood draw, but it can also be an inconvenience for some.

Pros

  • Partners with over 4,500 testing centers around the country
  • Offers hundreds of different blood or urine tests
  • Labs are CLIA-certified — the same labs a traditional doctor would use
  • Well-designed website that’s smart and user-friendly
  • Live chat features humans instead of bots
  • Accepts FSA/HSA payments
  • 500+ lab tests available

Cons

  • Rural areas (especially in the Midwest) have fewer available labs
  • No at-home or mail-order tests available
  • Price match guarantee is full of loopholes
  • Quality of experience depends heavily on the lab you select

How we evaluated HealthLabs?

Cost

Rating 7.3/10

The cost of HealthLabs tests is a bit above average compared to some of the competition. Still, they offer a handful of less expensive a la carte testing options typically bundled with other tests when you find them elsewhere. That affords you the potential to save money if you need to test for something particular.

HealthLabs also has one of the most generous price matching offers on the market — if you can find an identical test for less. Now, that’s not to say that HealthLabs has the lowest prices. The reality is that the guarantee only applies if you find a perfect match for one of their tests. That means it has to test for the same biomarkers using the same methodology. Frankly, we wouldn’t be surprised if they denied a price match because another company used a different brand of spectrometer or another piece of hardware.

The least appealing part of HealthLabs’ cost structure is their consultation system. If you feel you need to talk to a doctor for any reason — whether to acquire a prescription or to ask important questions regarding your results — you’ll have to pay $95 for the privilege.

Accuracy

Rating: 8.8/10

HealthLabs utilizes cutting-edge technology for most of their tests, provided you test through one of their major partner labs like LabCorp or Quest Diagnostics. Regional or local labs may not have the equipment required for certain test methodologies. They can likely still perform the tests, but results may come more slowly and be slightly less accurate.

No matter where you test, though, having a professional draw your sample in a medical environment helps ensure that it won’t fall prey to contamination or spoil from delayed shipping time or other issues. And every HealthLabs partner facility is CLIA-certified, so you can trust their facilities for cleanliness, training, and best practices.

Efficiency

Rating: 8.5/10

If you need results quickly, testing in a lab through HealthLabs might be your best option. Within 30 minutes of their order, our testers received emails informing them that they could take their test whenever needed. And because there was no need to wait for a kit to ship to you and then back to the lab, our testers had results in hand within a few days of their orders.

There are some pitfalls — if you end up going to a lab as a walk-in during peak hours, for example — but for the most part, the process from start to finish is fast and straightforward.

Customer care

Rating: 7.9/10

In most cases, HealthLabs’ customer care is excellent. Their website boasts a live chat option that features actual people on the other end who can answer complex questions. They’re also one of the few test purveyors in the telehealth space to accept HSA and FSA payments, opening their services up to a wide range of patients.

Their services can take a downturn if you head to a lab that lacks a quality staff or has more customers than it can handle. Fortunately, their system will alert you if you select a sub-par lab facility, and you can make that switch on your way to checkout.

Privacy

Rating: 8.0/10

Every parameter of your privacy over which HealthLabs has control receives outstanding protection. The site employs SSL encryption to safeguard your data, as well as the HL-7 interface, an international standard for maintaining health databases. They don’t sell any of your information to third parties for any purpose, though they do employ cookies for basic tracking and to improve users’ experience.

Our Top Picks

HealthLabs

If you need to order a health test, HealthLabs eliminates the need to go to a doctor's office first. Just order online and go to a nearby lab.

With hundreds of tests available, you may be a little lost if you don't know what type of health test you want to take. But for those who know what they need and want to test in a reputable lab, HealthLabs offers great convenience and value.

Comprehensive Health Panel
Reviewed by Innerbody Research
$198
$99
Standard Heart Health Panel
Reviewed by Innerbody Research
$598
$299
Comprehensive Vitamin Panel
Reviewed by Innerbody Research
$998
$499

Why you should trust us

At Innerbody Research, we extensively test each health service we review, including HealthLabs. All told, our team has spent over 170 hours testing and researching the services of HealthLabs and their chief competitors to provide an accurate, unbiased analysis of how the services compare, free of marketing jargon and gimmicks.

Over the past two decades, Innerbody Research has helped tens of millions of readers make more informed decisions to live healthier lifestyles. We evaluate the service based on adherence to quality, the latest medical evidence and health standards, and a simple question: would we buy the product or service ourselves if it weren’t part of our job, and would we recommend it to family and friends?

Additionally, like all health-related content on this website, this review was thoroughly vetted by one or more members of our Medical Review Board for accuracy.

What does HealthLabs do?

HealthLabs is an online testing marketplace that streamlines the process of ordering in-lab tests. You can use HealthLabs to access hundreds of different health screenings — their selection is extensive.

Here’s a complete breakdown of the breadth of testing options available by category.

  Test count Examples of available tests Most affordable test Most expensive test
Allergies 99 Gluten, shellfish, grass, mold $29 $259
Anemia 3 Platelets, folates, Hb-S $49 $169
Arthritis and inflammation 6 Antinuclear antibodies, CRP $49 $319
Blood type, blood disorders 4 ABO grouping, prothrombin time $29 $319
Diabetes 8 Glucose, hemoglobin A1c, albumin, etc. $28 $79
Drug 33 Marijuana, cocaine, opiates, etc. $45 $569
Fertility 16 Estradiol, prolactin, total testosterone $39 $169
Gastrointestinal health 6 Lactose intolerance, celiac $45 $249
General health 3 Lipid Panel, TSH $59 $99
Heart health and cholesterol 17 CRP, CoQ10 $29 $301
Heavy metals and toxins 21 Mercury, lead, arsenic $28 $249
Hepatitis 9 Hep B surface antigen, Hep C RNA $24 $239
Hormone 51 Testosterone, HGH, estrogen, FSH, etc. $37 $799
Immunity and titer tests 16 Measles, mumps, rubella $24 $199
Infectious diseases 20 TB, Lyme disease, Zika, Covid-19 $24 $715
Kidney and liver 13 Lipase, ammonia, uric acid $28 $99
Sports 10 Sports steroids, creatine $28 $199
Testosterone 4 Free and total testosterone $49 $199
Thyroid 11 T3, TSH, T4 $39 $119
STDs 29 Chlamydia, HIV, gonorrhea, trich $24 $479
Vitamin and nutritional tests 34 Vitamin B12, vitamin D 25-hydroxy, calcium, etc. $28 $499

HealthLabs’ more expensive tests tend to be comprehensive panels that test you for numerous things simultaneously. There’s also some crossover among categories, so a test that appears in the fertility section might also have a place among thyroid tests. Fortunately, the website is well organized enough that finding a particular test is relatively easy, and a staff of human live chat operators can help you quickly if you get a little lost.

View Tests

Is HealthLabs legit?

HealthLabs and the tests they provide are as legitimate as the services you’d receive from any doctor’s office, clinic, or hospital. The two significant differences are that:

  1. HealthLabs doesn’t take insurance, and

  2. You can order any test you want from the convenience of your own home without needing to speak with a physician first or acquire a prescription of any kind.

The labs that perform your tests are often the same ones that professional medical facilities use, and they’re subject to the same strict standards. You’ll visit a center to have blood drawn or to submit a urine, fecal, or saliva sample with the help of trained professionals. Your results and records are completely private and confidential — even more so than you might experience in a doctor’s office, as your results won’t end up on your medical record unless you want them to.

Is HealthLabs right for you?

HealthLabs is ideal for anyone who wants to gain some control over the testing and diagnosis of a given ailment. They can serve people concerned with everything from STDs to thyroid issues and even food sensitivities. They’re an excellent choice for people concerned about privacy. HealthLabs also appeals to people who want to have access to their test results before their doctors; rather than being surprised, they can go in armed with the information they need to collaboratively create a course of treatment.

While there are several high-quality, at-home testing options out there, HealthLabs can sometimes boast a higher degree of accuracy and reliability because you have a professional collecting your sample. You don’t have to stick your fingers with lancets or fill a tiny tube with a urine specimen. You can relax and let trained nurses perform these collections for you, eliminating the risk of untrained human error. Also, because you don’t have to wait for an at-home kit to ship to your house and then back to a lab, you can get results from HealthLabs much faster than you could from these other companies.

HealthLabs has an extensive array of tests available, so there’s a good chance that they have a screening you need. They also offer a combination of bundles and a la carte test purchasing, which can reduce overall costs if you know you need multiple tests or if you know you need to screen for something specific. And unlike many of those at-home companies, HealthLabs accepts HSA and FSA payments, so you can save a little money by utilizing their services.

HealthLabs may not be a good fit if you don’t live within striking distance of one of the company’s partner facilities or if you don’t think you’d have the time to visit one throughout your workweek. And if cost is your bottom line, some of the at-home options might be superior.

Privacy considerations

HealthLabs takes your privacy very seriously. They collect as little information as possible from their customers. When creating an account, you provide only your email, a password, and the information that would immediately appear on the lab request order.

In addition, HealthLabs uses healthcare-industry-standard encryption. The company states that they will never provide results over the phone and will never call you, send you an SMS, or leave a voicemail unless you expressly authorize this. HealthLabs also doesn’t print or mail any test results. Even the fact that HealthLabs doesn’t work with insurance means more privacy for you.

Finally, any charges on your credit or debit card statements will show up as “HealthLabs.com,” but they will not include any information regarding the specific tests you ordered or the lab where you tested.

In some states, laws mandate that providers like Healthlabs or other doctors report certain diseases (such as HIV or other STIs) to the local health authorities. The lab that processes your sample handles all of this, limiting the information to numbers only (no personally identifiable information). Medical laboratories are healthcare providers and are fully bound by HIPAA and its privacy restrictions.

HSA, FSA and health insurance

HealthLabs does not work with any health insurance and doesn’t provide paperwork or service statements to help you claim a refund. And because none of their tests require a prescription, HealthLabs would not constitute the “medical necessity” required by most insurance companies.

However, if you have a Health Savings Account (HSA) or Flexible Savings Account (FSA), you can use those cards to pay for any tests on HealthLabs.

How does the testing process work at HealthLabs?

HealthLabs is a great place to order and pay for tests and securely access test results, but they do not conduct any of the tests. Instead, you will go to one of their CLIA-certified partner labs to submit your sample.

In a nutshell, the process for testing through the HealthLabs website is clear and straightforward:

  1. Select a test category

  2. Find the test you want

  3. Select a lab

  4. Pay online

  5. Go to the lab to submit your sample

  6. Check for your results securely online

Purchasing a test

HealthLabs organizes their tests in categories depending on the type of disease, condition, or health concern. For many common conditions or classes (such as diabetes, thyroid conditions, or STD screening), you’ll also find suggestions for specific panels, which are essentially a package deal of several tests that people frequently want to take together.

Add all the tests you need to your cart, and then move on to “select a lab.” This section uses a detailed map to help you find a lab nearby. You can search for labs by zip code and filter to see only those that are open on Saturdays, for instance. Then, you will move on to the payment page.

Insider Tip: If Healthlabs suggests that you select a different lab than the one you initially chose, take them up on it. They will often steer their customers away from labs that are too busy or have recently been underperforming.

At this stage, HealthLabs asks you for some of your information, which it will use both to write your referral and create your account. The required information is simple and kept to the bare minimum:

  • Full name
  • Contact email
  • Date of birth
  • Gender

If you choose, you can protect your privacy by using a fake name at this stage. Just be aware that this can create confusion when you go to the lab, especially if there are any hiccups with your paperwork.

You can pay with a credit card, prepaid debit card, PayPal, HSA, or FSA card.

Visiting a lab

After payment, HealthLabs completes and creates your lab work request order. You can download it directly from the website or have it sent to your email. This form will include the address of the lab you selected and any special instructions for the test you chose (for example, if you need to fast).

You need to print the work order and carry it to the lab with you. If you don’t have a printer, you can return to your main account page and ask HealthLabs to fax it directly. After that, you may go to the lab at your earliest convenience. It might not be a bad idea to call the lab to confirm the fax receipt. Our testers had two occasions where their fax did not go through, and the lab would not see them.

selecting a lab on HealthLabs

Keep in mind that you won’t need an appointment and won’t need to pay anything at the lab, but you should still carry a form of picture ID.

Insider Tip: If your test isn’t urgent, consider making an appointment. Though unnecessary and usually booked out for days or weeks down the line, an appointment will ensure that the lab can see you quickly. Otherwise, you may have to wait — sometimes more than an hour — to give your sample.

Results

Results usually take 1-3 days to arrive. Our testers received their results within about 48 hours. HealthLabs will notify you via email as soon as they are ready, at which point you can log in to your secure HealthLabs account to see them or print them. You can share them with your doctor or keep them to yourself. If you need help understanding your results, HealthLabs customer service representatives can guide you to a baseline understanding of the data. If you need more information, you may need to consult with your doctor or one of HealthLabs’ physicians, but bear in mind that a HealthLabs doctor consultation will cost you, as described below.

HealthLabs doctor consultations

After any test, you can request a doctor’s consultation. This consultation can be a great source of additional information or comfort. HealthLabs doctors can also provide you with prescriptions for medication to treat any diagnosed diseases.

The problem with the HealthLabs doctor consultation model is cost. Just to speak to a doctor — whether or not they provide you with a prescription — HealthLabs charges $95. Other at-home testing companies provide this service for free, and we think HealthLabs should seriously consider doing the same.

We also recommend bringing positive results to your doctor if it’s feasible. They know you and your medical history, and they can order follow-up tests as needed and guide you toward the best course of treatment.

What types of tests does HealthLabs offer?

HealthLabs offers hundreds of different individual blood and urine tests, as well as dozens of test panels, which are combinations of tests that doctors commonly order. Below, you’ll find the most popular tests within each of the following categories:

  1. General health and wellness

  2. STD testing

  3. Drug tests

  4. Infectious disease tests

  5. Heavy metals and toxicity tests

  6. Hormone tests

  7. Vitamin and nutritional measurements

  8. Allergies

  9. Cardiac health

  10. Fertility and pregnancy

General health and wellness

These tests can provide you with a current “snapshot” of your general health. Most of them can help monitor chronic diseases, check up on the function of different systems, or provide direction for further testing.

  • Complete blood count (CBC) – $28
  • Basic metabolic panel – $29
  • Routine urinalysis – $29
  • Basic health panel (CBC, urine, metabolic panel) – $59

The comprehensive health panel ($99) is one of the site’s best values. The panel includes:

  • Metabolic testing
  • Lipids test (for cholesterol)
  • Complete Blood Count (CBC) test
  • Urinalysis
  • Thyroid panel (including thyroid-stimulating hormone)

At $99, this panel includes tests that individually would add up to a much higher cost. It can provide vital information about the health of your heart, blood vessels, thyroid, liver, kidneys, muscles, and nerves.

STD testing

HealthLabs offers STD testing for many potential infections, including HIV RNA testing with early detection. They’re a great choice for people looking to keep their exploits confidential or those who might not want to have an awkward conversation with their doctors. STD tests from HealthLabs can detect:

  • Chlamydia
  • Gonorrhea
  • Syphilis
  • Herpes 1 and 2
  • HIV
  • Trichomoniasis
  • Mycoplasma genitalium and hominis

HealthLabs also offers six different STD test panels. We highly recommend these, as many STDs occur concurrently or can render a person more susceptible to infections when one is present.

The Ultimate STD Panel ($298) is their most comprehensive, offering early detection for HIV type 1 and 4th generation testing for types 1 and 2, as well as testing for nearly every other infection in their catalog. The Ultimate panel excludes testing for mycoplasma genitalium and hominis.

Drug tests

Drug tests from HealthLabs require a blood, urine, or hair sample. They can detect past consumption of specific substances, especially illegal ones or those with a potential for abuse. Some screenings can look back for 90 days to detect metabolites for as many as 14 substances, including marijuana, barbiturates, fentanyl, and opiates.

  • Cocaine screening - $65
  • Amphetamine screening - $199
  • Opiate screen (OxyContin, morphine, codeine, percocet, heroin) - $49
  • Cannabinoids (THC) - $64
  • 10-drug panel - $79
  • 7-drug hair panel - $180

Infectious disease tests

Pathogens such as viruses, bacteria, or fungi cause infectious or communicable diseases. This category spans a variety of diseases, including sexually transmitted diseases, lung infections, and parasites.

Among others, HealthLabs’ infectious disease tests include the following:

  • HIV RNA (for early detection) - $119
  • COVID-19 antibodies - $119
  • Tuberculosis blood test - $199
  • Viral STD panel (HIV, herpes, hepatitis A, B, and C) - $109
  • Lyme disease antibodies - $159

Heavy metals and toxicity testing

These heavy metals tests check for the presence of specific toxins, poisons, or heavy metals in a person’s body. The tests are useful if you are worried about your home or work environment’s safety or if you’re aware of any recent or chronic exposure. You can utilize one of their three testing panels or order tests a la carte for 11 different metals, some of which are available with different sample types to ensure the highest level of accuracy for your situation.

  • Blood test for three standard heavy metals - $219
  • Urine test for four standard heavy metals - $398
  • Lead blood test - $48

NOTE: To learn more about this type of testing and both in-lab and at-home testing options, you can visit our guide on choosing the best heavy metal testing kit for more information about this.

Hormone tests

Hormones are chemicals made in the body that act as messengers to various organs and glands. Most hormones impact multiple organ systems at once, which is why hormonal disorders tend to have varied and severe symptoms. Hormone tests from HealthLabs can diagnose fertility issues and problems with immunity or athletic performance.

  • Basic female hormone panel - $199
  • Total testosterone - $49
  • Cortisol test - $109

HealthLabs also offers a hormone panel designed for trans individuals ($149) that applies to those transitioning either from male to female or from female to male.

Vitamin and nutritional testing

Vitamin and nutritional tests from HealthLabs measure amounts of specific vitamins and nutrients in both urine and blood. People often use these tests to help diagnose nutritional problems, malabsorption disorders, or renal disorders. People on certain medications or special diets often have a higher risk of developing specific nutritional deficiencies.

  • Vitamin B12 - $35
  • Comprehensive vitamin panel - $499
  • Mineral panel, urine - $249
  • Vegan nutritional maintenance panel - $149

Allergies

Allergy tests make up HealthLabs’ largest category, with 99 total tests covering enormous potential allergens. Among their most popular tests are their food allergy and gluten sensitivity tests. Other at-home testing companies offer food sensitivity testing, but it’s important to know what biomarkers these tests identify.

Most of those other companies test for IgG, IgA, and IgG4 antibodies, all of which relate to sensitivities, but none of which directly correlate to allergies.

HealthLabs’ food allergy tests focus on IgE antibodies, which are the antibodies directly linked to allergies. This helps ensure that you don’t cut out foods from your otherwise healthy diet just because a lackluster test implied you had a sensitivity.

The categories of allergy tests from HealthLabs include:

  • Food
  • Pets and animals
  • Drugs and chemicals
  • Tree and grass pollen
  • Seasonal allergies
  • Regional allergies
  • Mold and fungus
  • Insect allergies

Many people carry around unofficial diagnoses of specific allergies that they received anecdotally after having a bad reaction to something as a child. If you’ve spent years or decades avoiding certain foods or experiences out of fears based on unconfirmed allergies, you should get tested. You’ll either confirm that something is dangerous to you or realize that you could have been enjoying it all along.

Cardiac health

With the notable exception of 2021, during which COVID-19 exceeded all other causes of death in our country, heart disease has been the leading cause of death in the United States. The best defense against heart disease is knowledge: knowledge of how to eat healthily, how to care for your cardiovascular system, and how to catch heart disease long before it becomes a severe problem. That’s where these tests come in.

HealthLabs offers a total of 17 heart health tests that include lipid panels, CoQ10 tests, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein tests, and more. This might be a category for which you’d want to speak with your doctor before ordering a particular test. They will know best what you need to measure to identify or keep an eye on any problems.

Fertility and pregnancy

Successfully getting pregnant requires a lot of variables to line up just right. Some of these things you can control, and others require patience and monitoring. You can use tests from HealthLabs to help you determine fertility based on hormonal activity, confirm your pregnancy, and keep an eye on its health with various prenatal tests.

There are fertility tests in this category suitable for both men and women, so you can identify potential problems with conception and consult with your doctor about steps you can take to increase your chances.

How HealthLabs compares to the competition

Compared to services that ship testing kits directly to your home, HealthLabs differs primarily by sample collection. For example, instead of drawing your own blood from a fingertip with a retracting lancet, a professional will draw that blood from a vein. For anyone nervous about collecting a specimen by themselves, this is a nice feature.

It’s also undeniable that in-lab testing yields faster results by doing away with shipping times. But there are some reasons you might want to investigate HealthLabs’ competition in the at-home testing space, and there are even a couple of in-lab testing companies like HealthLabs that might interest you.

At-home testing

At-home testing companies like Everlywell, LetsGetChecked, myLAB Box, and Paloma Health deliver test kits right to your door. Each company offers a somewhat similar selection of tests, but myLAB Box and LetsGetChecked have more than the others, and Paloma is exclusively a thyroid testing company at this time.

HealthLabs prices for the many a la carte tests are comparable to those from these other companies, but their bundles tend to be a bit more expensive. Also, as we noted above, most of these at-home companies offer free doctor consultations in the event of a positive result, where HealthLabs charges a hefty $95 — greater than the cost of many of their tests. LetsGetChecked goes a step further and provides free medication for various diagnoses.

Ultimately, if you don’t need your results as quickly as possible and you don’t mind collecting your sample yourself, these at-home tests are probably preferable — so long as they have the test you need.

PersonaLabs

The other major player in in-lab testing that you order and review from the convenience of your home is PersonaLabs. Like HealthLabs, they have a massive catalog of available tests. For some tests, they even let you comparison-shop for the best price between the two major lab facilities with which they partner: Quest Diagnostic and LabCorp.

At this point, we prefer HealthLabs over PersonaLabs due to our more positive testing experiences with them. But you should compare their lab networks to ensure that you can find the most convenient location near you and the best price for a given test.

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