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Case Study: PBSC Shipment for Hong Kong Registry

The PBSC shipment case highlighted our team’s adaptability, active communication, and reliance on data-driven technology.

Royale International has over 30 years of expertise in temperature-controlled logistics services. Our Industry Experts offer quality solutions according to our GDP accredited global Quality Management System (QMS). However, Royale’s successful shipments go beyond standardised procedures. Take, for instance, the Peripheral Blood Stem Cells (PBSC) shipment case below, where its success hinged on our team’s adaptability, active communication, and reliance on data-driven technology.


Background – who requested the bone marrow shipments?

The Hong Kong Bone Marrow Donor Registry (HKBMDR) requested Royale International to handle a PBSC shipment from Harbin, China to Hong Kong. Hospitals commonly use PBSCs for bone marrow transplants to treat cancers and blood diseases. Blood cancers like leukemia are one of the top ten cancers in the city, diagnosing more than 1,000 patients annually. The success of this shipment was critical to meet the high demand of a lifesaving bone marrow transplant. 


Challenge – What factors led to this complex PBSC shipment?

Unlike critical organ transplants, PBSC shipments can remain viable for longer durations under refrigerated temperatures between 2˚C to 8˚C. However, this shipment encountered various external challenges. 

Firstly, there were constant flight delays due to heavy snowstorms in Harbin, with all direct flights being consequently cancelled. Secondly, the packaging was slowly losing its temperature-controlled capabilities, posing a threat to the integrity of the stem cells unless an alternative solution can be identified. Finally, despite the good shelf life of PBSCs, time was ticking, and the patient needed the stem cells for immediate transfusion.


Solution – How did Royale face the situation? 

Royale International offered a data-driven solution relying on their trained Medical Courier Network and high-end lane assessment tool: 

  • Royale’s trained medical couriers immediately notified our Industry Experts about the adverse weather conditions. This provided high visibility for our teams and our client concerning the PBSC shipment. 
  • Our experts thus utilised our Lane Risk Assessment (LRA) tool and their longstanding partnerships with various airlines to seek an optimal route for its delivery. All the while, the medical courier was in transit to the airport after picking up the PBSC shipment. 
  • Eventually, Royale booked the back-up flight, which included a transfer to Korea before heading to Hong Kong. The assigned courier informed us that they were not able to complete the extended journey.  
  • Another medical courier was notified and quickly dispatched to Korea to receive the shipment and complete its last leg. 

Upon its delivery, the PBSCs were logged and stored in Queen Elizabeth’s refrigeration units. The lifesavings transplant took place shortly after.

The PBSC shipment case timeline exhibits the successful shipment within 30 hours.

Royale International’s biologistics are one-stop solutions that focus on quality and reliability. Our Life Sciences Experts offer services that mitigate temperature-controlled supply chain risks and ensure successful shipments. 

Learn about our packaging solutions? Read through our article here.  

Want to speak to our Life Sciences experts for a temperature-controlled solution? Send an email to lifesciences@royaleinternational.com or lifesaving@royaleinternational.com 

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