A simple and inexpensive container for the transport of biological specimens in limited resource situations

Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg. 2006 Nov;100(11):1084-6. doi: 10.1016/j.trstmh.2006.03.005. Epub 2006 Jun 30.


We describe a diagnostic specimen transport container that is appropriate for limited resource or emergency settings. The transport container is constructed from polyvinyl chloride (PVC) plumbing pipe, which is readily available and inexpensive (US$1-2, depending on size) and has wide flexibility of size due to the range of PVC pipe dimensions available. The PVC transporters are durable, water-resistant and may be easily decontaminated. They have been adapted for the transport of blood culture bottles from provincial hospitals in Laos, where, during a 2-year period, 380 PVC tubes containing blood culture bottles were transported without any leakage or breakage. We have found the PVC transporter to be a useful and cost-efficient durable alternative that meets IATA Packing Instruction 650 biological transport container requirements.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Blood Specimen Collection / economics
  • Blood Specimen Collection / instrumentation*
  • Developing Countries
  • Equipment Design
  • Polyvinyl Chloride


  • Polyvinyl Chloride