OpenBiome: Boston Non-Profit Is Paying People $13,000 A Year For Their Poop

OpenBiome: Boston Non-Profit Is Paying People $13,000 A Year For Their Poop

Are you interested in making up to $13,000 a year for your poop? If so, then OpenBiome may have a job opening for you.

The non-profit organization is attacking a painful and potentially serious digestive system disease by creating a pool of donors willing to share their poop with those in need.

The organization, founded in 2013, treats patients sick with an infectious bacteria called C. difficile. The bacteria can leave them bedridden with crippling gastrointestinal pain, but can be treated and eventually eliminated by introducing healthy stool into the patient.

But the market for poop is still very, very small (so much so that many people stricken with C. difficile are forced to go to friends and family to donate poop), so OpenBiome is offering donors $40 a poop, or $50 if they promise to come in five days a week.

As the Washington Post noted, that means up to $250 per week and $13,000 a year — all for pooping.

But it’s not a job just for anyone, said the organization’s co-founder, Mark Smith.

“It’s harder to become a donor than it is to get into MIT,” he joked.

To underscore the long odds of becoming a professional poop donor, the Washington Post notes the following.

“Of the 1,000 or so potential donors who’ve expressed interest on his Web site over the past two years, only about 4 percent have passed the extensive medical questioning and stool testing.”

As a result, OpenBiome holds tightly when it finds an appropriate donor. Smith noted that most of them are faithful, coming in about four times a week.

OpenBiome acknowledges that the world of poop donation is not glamorous, but for those those afflicted with C. difficile, it’s the best hope there is.

“For a person suffering from recurrent C. difficile infections, even leaving the house can become nightmarish. This aggressive intestinal bug affects 500,000 Americans every year, 20% of whom will face multiple relapses. Where antibiotic treatment has failed to help, though, a new treatment called fecal microbiota transplantation has shown a cure rate of 90%.”

Anyone interested in donating their poop to OpenBiome (and making up to $13,000 a year doing it) can check out the process here. There is a catch, however — they have to live in the Boston area.