A Brief History of Medical Couriers

Posted on March 21, 2023

Just as we have needed couriers to quickly transport information for thousands of years, as long as we have been practicing medicine, we have needed medical couriers. What we do at Fleet Couriers is the most recent stage of service the medical community has needed throughout history.

The history of couriers in medicine can be traced back to ancient times. Early medical knowledge was shared through the exchange of texts and manuscripts between scholars and practitioners.


As the practice of medicine developed and knowledge became more specialized, the need for rapid and secure transport of medical materials increased, giving rise to the profession of medical couriers.


medical couriers

Medical Texts in Medieval Times

During the medieval period, couriers were often monks who were responsible for transporting medical texts and herbs between monasteries and medical practitioners. Physicians highly valued these couriers for their ability to navigate rugged terrain. Their knowledge of the healing properties of plants also made them invaluable.


Changes with the Printing Press

The advent of the printing press in the 15th century changed many things. This included increasing the demand for medical couriers as the production and distribution of medical texts became more widespread. The Italian physician and anatomist Andreas Vesalius is a noteworthy figure who made use of couriers. He used couriers in the 16th century to transport his anatomical drawings and manuscripts between Italy and the Netherlands.


medical couriers

Transportation Developments of the Industrial Revolution

During the 19th century, the development of railroads and steamships revolutionized the transportation of medical materials. It made them faster and more reliable, meaning more materials could travel further differences. Couriers were employed by hospitals, laboratories, and pharmaceutical companies to transport specimens, drugs, and equipment between locations. In the early 20th century, couriers played a crucial role in the transportation of vaccines and serums during disease outbreaks.


medical couriers

Medical Couriers Today | Fleet Couriers

Today, the profession of medical courier continues to play an important role in the healthcare industry. Couriers are responsible for transporting a wide range of materials, including blood samples, tissue samples, equipment, and medication, between hospitals, clinics, laboratories, and other facilities. With the advent of new technologies and the increasing importance of timely and secure delivery, the demand for skilled and experienced medical couriers continues to grow. At Fleet Couriers, we provide services to medical facilities in Massachusetts and New England.


Contact us at (800) 734-9309 for more information about our services.