Medical Courier Careers
Are you an organ donor? According to the United Network For Organ Sharing, over 120,000 people are waiting for organ transplants. One organ donor can save up to eight lives. Nearly 80 organs are transported and transplanted every single day. There is a massive demand for organ donors and time is of the essence.
Critical patients wait patiently for vital organs. The availability of organs is often unpredictable. This is why labs, clinics, hospitals, and medical offices all need qualified medical couriers to be on call at all times.
Medical couriers are tasked with the fast, safe, and accurate deliveries of time sensitive, medical related items from one health care facility to another. This includes things like organs, medical records, human tissues, blood and urine samples, lab specimens, x-rays, and test results that cannot be shipped via the postal service, UPS, or FedEx. Deliveries like these require the care, attention, and urgency of a medical courier.
Medical couriers must be available around the clock to transport an organ or tissue from a donor to a transplant facility. Their job can literally mean the difference between life and death. Whenever an organ becomes available it’s time for a medical courier to jump into action.
The longer an organ is out of a body, the more damage can occur. Whether the medical courier is transporting organs like heart, kidneys, liver, lungs, pancreas, intestine, or thymus or tissues like bones, tendons, cornea, skin, heart valves, nerves, or veins, it’s essential that their job be completed quickly.
Medical couriers are responsible for proper storage and transportation of organs. Transported organs are usually placed in a solution to slow the metabolic rate and then stored in a temperature-controlled cooler to limit blood circulation. Technology may change these methods in the future – only time will tell.
Once properly packaged, medical couriers may drive vans or cars equipped with lights and sirens. Sometimes they accompany the organ or tissue on an air ambulance. Organs like the heart have about a four-hour window before they must be transplanted, while a kidney may have 48 hours. Ideally, organs need to be transplanted within 8 hours of leaving a body. It’s up to the medical courier to get the item to the required destination ASAP. If they aren’t fast enough, the organ will be wasted and someone could die.
Medical couriers are in constant contact with the medical facilities, doctors, and dispatch before, during, and after the transportation. If an organ donor can provide several organs, organ specific recovery teams may work together to get each organ to the correct destination and patient.
Medical couriers are required to travel for their job. They may have to drive to remote hospitals to pick up a kidney or fly to a big city to deliver a set of lungs. It can be a busy and unpredictable schedule. There is more work in major metropolitan areas than in rural areas. When there are no organ deliveries, medical couriers stay busy by transporting other medical items between medical facilities.
To become a medical courier, you need a valid drivers license and clean driving record. Training is not always required, but it is highly recommended. Private medical transport companies employ the majority of medical couriers, but there are sometimes jobs with hospitals, medical facilities, or laboratories too. On average, medical couriers are paid about $12 per hour or $47,000 per year.
Working as a medical courier is a very rewarding profession. Every call is a life saving opportunity. Are you ready to be a hero?
Quick Facts About Medical Courier Careers
Job Title: Medical Courier aka Organ Courier
Office: Vehicle or Air Ambulance
Description: Pickup and delivery of organs, tissues, and other time-sensitive medical-related items
Certifications/Education: No formal training required
Necessary Skills: A sense of urgency, Attention to detail
Potential Employers: Private medical transport companies
Pay: $12 per hour or $47,000 per year