• BLOG
  • Limited PHI distributions and distributing containers

    Hi all,

    I had two questions related to specimen distribution:

    1. For distributions where PHI is withheld or limited, how would you indicate on the manifest that two distributed specimens are from the same participant and/or from the same parent specimen?

    2. Is it possible to distribute a container and the specimens within it? For certain distributions the entire container with specimens is shipped, meaning this container would no longer exist in our system. However, during a distribution in OpenSpecimen the specimens are removed from their container and those locations become available again.

    Thank you!

    Hi @Fiona_O_Brien

    1. You can include de-identified IDs like participant PPID or parent specimen label in the distribution report. For help in configuring distribution report, refer to https://openspecimen.atlassian.net/wiki/x/PAHDBg
    2. No, it is not possible to distribute containers.


    1 Like

    Hi Poornima,
    I also am in need of the ability to distribute containers.

    Reason for Need: Requestors need the manifest to include specimen labels and their location within the shipping box.

    • Workflow:
      Specimens are transferred into the new shipping box.
      Specimens are distributed, thus erasing their locations, which is understandable within the CP.
      Specimen locations are erased and then are not available to provide to the Requestor.
      Can the DP be set to record the locations in the container and the container name in the history so that info is available for download on the report or manifest?
      Perhaps a radio button to select ā€˜distribute containerā€™ could then mark the container itself as ā€˜Distributedā€™ and the system would archive or delete that container name? Maybe that container could be stored within the DP?
      Problem: If one does not remember to download the report from the Cart used to create the new container, the entire map is lost.
      Could this work by creating a Box as a ā€˜Distributionā€™ container (not storage)? I attempted this, but the box remained and the specimens disappeared upon Distribution.
      This would be a helpful addition for biobanks to be able to efficiently provide information to clients. I hope you can consider this for future releases.

    Hello @Donna_Housley,

    One workaround for this is to use the transfer event created after the specimens are distributed. This transfer event will contain the ā€˜From container name and positionā€™ of the specimen before distribution. The only problem with this is that multiple transfer events could be seen if a transfer event was created prior. So you will also have to add a condition on transfer event comment field containing ā€˜Distributed to (DP short title)ā€™. You can customize distribution report to include these fields.

    Refer to the ā€˜Reportā€™ section under https://openspecimen.atlassian.net/wiki/x/KoD4W for more details on customizing distribution report.

    We will consider the distribution of containers as future enhancement.