How to Transport Specimen Bags to the Lab

Any dedicated scientist will want to place an ample amount of consideration into the methods they use to transport their specimen bags from one location to another. Specimens are used for crucial lab testing as well as scientific study, so it’s important that their safety isn’t compromised during transport. Fortunately, with the aid of specimen bags , you will be able to get them to their final destination safely.

What Are Specimens?

Very quickly, let’s discuss what specimens actually are. A specimen is basically a bodily substance that is taken from an individual that will later be used for analysis. These can include tissues, urine, and blood, so taking care of specimens while transporting them is extremely important. With the help of specimen bags for lab scientists, the process becomes much more simplified as you will see.

Transporting Specimens – Preparation Tips to Keep in Mind

Let’s take a look at the primary steps that you should follow when preparing your specimen for transport. They include:

  • Place the specimen bag into a secondary, leak-proof container that is labeled with a “Bio-Hazard” sticker. The purpose of the secondary container is to prevent spillage should the primary bag start to leak during transit. Note that your secondary bag may also include specimen bags with biohazard logo that are a little larger than the first ones.
  • Any paperwork associated with the transportation of the specimen should be adequately protected and separate from the primary specimen to prevent it from being accidentally contaminated. Various types of specimen bags have separate pouch pockets for storing documents safely during transport.
  • If the specimens are being held in a freezer or refrigerator while in transit then this container should also be labeled as containing bio-hazardous material.
  • If appropriate, place the specimen bag into a third container that is rigid and that offers a climate controlled environment. This will help the specimen remain unaffected by external elements until it reaches the laboratory.

While these tips don’t need to followed exactly, they should provide you with enough of a guide to move forward when transporting specimen. Remember that specimen bags for lab are probably the best option that you will have when transporting your specimens since they are durable, identifiable, and easy to transport.

Handling Specimen Spills or Accidents

In the unfortunate instance of an accident or spill, it is important that you contact the laboratory immediately. The reason is because laboratory personnel will be able to take immediate action towards containing the spill and possibly saving what is left of the specimen without compromising its integrity.

Upon Arrival To The Lab

Once specimen bags arrive to their final destination, there are a few steps that laboratory specialists should take before removing the specimen from its primary bag. For example, before removing the specimen from the secondary container, it is important that you make sure that the primary container hasn’t been ripped or torn. Only after no visual cues for damage have been found should it be advised to carefully remove the specimen from its secondary container.

Properly Identifying Specimen Bags

As you might already know, all specimen bags should be labeled with at least two identifiers:

  • The patient’s full name (which includes their last name, first name, and middle initial).
  • The second patient identifier can include either the birthdate of the patient or a unique patient number, ID, or code.

A lot of the times, a specialized barcode label will be placed on specimen bags. This will help laboratory specialists ensure that they are working on the right specimen.

Specimen bags that are labeled as “Bio-Hazardous” as well as labels for the date-of-transportation/arrival are also useful. Overall, properly identifying specimen bags will ensure that specialists know what they’re working on.

What Kinds of Specimen Transport Bags Are There?

Fortunately, there are a wide variety of specimen transport bags to choose from. Each one serves a slightly different purpose so it’s important that you understand each of their functionalities before making a final decision. They include:

  • Clear specimen bags ? Specimen bags with bio-hazard logos
  • Specimen bags with bio-hazard logos as well as black privacy pouches
  • Specimen bags with bio-hazard logos and a back flap

Each bag type typically offers a specialized area for keeping patient information as well as information regarding the actual specimen. For the most part, each option is budget-friendly, and is ideal for when you are transporting specimens over short and long distances.

Using specimen bags to transport specimen to and from the lab will ensure safe handling without cross-contamination and help prevent accidents over the long run.

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