Measles is a highly infectious disease that can cause great risk to infants, young children, pregnant women or immunocompromised individuals. The disease is caused by a virus and it is easily spread when an infected person coughs, breathes or sneezes. Despite a vaccine being available to protect against measles, 128,000 people worldwide died from the disease in 2021.

This short article will outline how you can safely transport measles test samples between healthcare facilities and testing centres using Intelsius packaging and labels.

What is the relevant compliance to adhere to?

The classification of infectious substances are as follows:

Category B substances, known as UN3373 covers substances which are not appropriate for inclusion in Category A.

Category A is described as an infectious substance that, if exposed to it, is life threatening or capable of causing permanent disability in otherwise healthy humans or animals. It is further sub-divided into two sub-categories: UN2814 (affecting humans) and UN2900 (affecting animals only).

We’ve outlined the difference between Category A and B compliance here, along with the relevant transport regulations and packaging requirements. If you’re unsure whether your sample is Category A or B, click here to see our easy-to-use classification chart.

Oral samples in the form of swabs are usually taken for a suspected measles cases and while there is no official guidance published in the UK on the transport of measles samples, Intelsius has a range of packaging solutions designed for carrying human swab samples, which are both Category A and Category B compliant, as well as compliant with other international transport regulations such as IATA and ADR.

What sample transport packaging solutions should I use?


PathoPak is a cost-effective and durable option which is both Category A and B compliant. It has a highly protective, rigid outer packaging container and is appropriate for transporting a range of primaries including blood tubes, specimen containers, swabs, blood collection/transfusion bags and medical devices, making it appropriate for the transport of measles samples.

PathoPak solutions are available in 800ml, 1L, 2L or 3L sizes and meets IATA, ADR, and CFR 49 (DOT) transport regulations. Click here to learn more about the range and if it would be suitable for your needs.

PathoPak size range


Our PathoShield sample packaging range offers Category A and B compliant solutions which comprise a flexible 95kPa tested secondary container, absorbent, labels, and UN markings. The sample transport packaging range is suitable to ship a wide range of primaries, including blood vials, swabs and sample containers and each system is pre-printed with the required markings. They are also equipped to ship samples in compliance with international transport regulations.

Un3373 Compliance Guide PathoShield

The PathoShield range is available in multiple sizes, accommodating between 3 and 6 tubes per box. They are also available as outer packaging only. Click here to find out more.

Label Compliance

While the UK Government doesn’t classify measles swab samples for Category A or B compliance, those looking to adhere to specific Cat A or B compliance measures can find out how to do so on our dedicated page, here.

Get In Touch

Our full range of Category A and B compliant sample transport solutions are available here. If you have queries about transporting infectious substances, sample transport packaging, or label compliance, you can get in touch with our team here.


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