The importance of safe sample transport

Written by AssureCloud - AssureCloud Team
2 Feb 2021

When it comes to the integrity of samples and specimens, ensuring their safe transport to laboratories and testing facilities is of vital importance. Guaranteeing secure collection, transport and delivery is crucial in making sure that the samples’ value remains uncompromised, and that they are not damaged or mishandled in any way.

For this reason, sending samples to laboratories in different regions can be a delicate and complicated procedure; as such, transporting samples to a single, more optimally located facility is often the best solution.

Best practice sample transport

In order for analysis to be both accurate and objective, it is vital that samples arrive in a healthy state and a timeous manner. In order to ensure this, the following considerations need to be taken into account:

  • Packaging: Any packaging used in transporting samples must be structurally sound enough to protect the specimens within, and must be able to be easily handled and transported by those in charge of delivery. Failed deliveries or damaged samples will cost both time and money, delaying the analysis process unnecessarily.
  • Mode of transport: Samples are most often only transported one way, from client to lab, and this needs to be taken into account when selecting a mode of transfer. Some remote facilities may not have access to couriers or postal facilities; as such, clients may need to safely deliver the samples themselves, or ask for assistance from obliging laboratory staff.
  • Receiving: Just as samples need to be delivered safely, they need to be received safely as well. This can be done by coordinating optimal times for delivery and receipt, tracking and tracing the delivery, and confirming its arrival upon delivery.
  • Safety: It is the responsibility of everyone involved to ensure that samples are delivered and received safely. Those delivering need to ensure that the samples are kept safe throughout the entire delivery process, and those receiving need to ensure that the samples arrive in pristine condition – and report any leaks or other damage, should they arrive in a compromised state.
  • Turnaround time: It’s important to note that the integrity of some samples is time-sensitive, and that they need to be analysed within a certain period in order for the results to be valid. As such, it’s crucial that delivery be reliable, dependable, and timely, with no unforeseen delays or problems.

Testing samples with Assurecloud

As the largest laboratory group in southern Africa, with a footprint across both South Africa and Zambia, Assurecloud provides custom-built facilities for food safety testing, environmental testing, veterinary testing, and occupational and industrial hygiene testing as well. With a number of laboratories throughout its locality, Assurecloud is able to minimise the risks associated with sample transport across multiple regions, and provide testing as close to source as possible, with little to no impact on the transport and storage of samples, and the ability to provide quick, accurate results.

It’s this level of support that makes Assurecloud such a vital partner in industries as diverse as food services, restaurants, agriculture, petrochemical, mining and water management, with strict quality standards and meticulous methodologies that allow us to offer a broad range of timely, reliable testing.

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